PHA Maintenance Crews Brave Hurricane Conditions to Assist Residents

(Philadelphia, PA - November 1, 2012) - Nearly 100 Philadelphia Housing Authority employees worked through the wind and rain from Hurricane Sandy to ensure that residents and their homes were safe.

PHA crews answered a total of 34 calls on Monday and Tuesday as most of the city was shut down and residents stayed in their homes to avoid injury or other personal catastrophe.

The agency opened three shelters with continuous staffing during the storm: Nellie Reynolds Gardens in North Philadelphia, Germantown House in the northwestern part of the city, and Wilson Park in South Philadelphia. Thirteen people stayed overnight at the PHA shelters as crews were able to handle most calls without displacing residents.

"We at the Philadelphia Housing Authority were blessed that we got through the storm with our residents safe and very little damage to our homes," said Kelvin Jeremiah, Interim Executive Director. "I truly believe that the reason we got through the storm so well was due to PHA's emergency responders and essential staff. They performed exceptionally well and ensured that we were able to ride out the storm successfully."

Jeremiah added that the preparation before the hurricane struck and the execution of the emergency plan during the storm were phenomenal.

"I also want to thank Mayor Michael Nutter, the American Red Cross, and the City's emergency responders for their leadership, support and coordination," Mr. Jeremiah said.

The emergency calls PHA received during the storm involved a range of issues, including roof damage, leaks, downed trees and poles, a damaged cyclone fence, flooded basements, and heat issues.

Power outages occurred at the Gladys B. Jacobs and Richard Allen developments in North Philadelphia. PHA monitored the health and safety of residents who chose to stay in their homes and power was restored within the hour.  

There are no injuries or major damage to report.