Arizona Red Cross volunteers help storm victims in the Carolinas

NORTH CAROLINA (KSAZ) - Tropical Depression Florence continues to cause major damage in its wake, and about 60 volunteers from Arizona's Red Cross are in North Carolina to help out. 

Red Cross volunteer Damian Nichols from the Phoenix chapter is currently in North Carolina. He says they had to wait for the storm to end before really getting to work.

"Issuing cleanup kits and water and blankets and getting food out to those who don't have power, that's kind of our mission until the storm passes," said Nichols. "After that we will start going in and assessing the neighborhoods and the homes."

The volunteers will help those in need of supplies, shelter and food after evacuating their homes, in addition to assessing the damage. 

"We're expecting to find a lot of flood damage," said Nichols. "Luckily before the hurricane made it to shore it was downgraded so we didn't see a lot of the high wind damage, but we see tons of standing water. We are measuring it in feet not inches so we're expecting to see a lot of water damage, a lot of flooding."

Nichols says it may take quite a bit of time to repair the damage that's been done.

"Months and months just to finish the disaster assessment. Once that's done people really get on the road to recovery, so we are looking at months and months at this point."

Thankfully he and other volunteers from Arizona have training in how to deal with storm damage because of dealing with the monsoon storms. 

"If you think about a monsoon it's just a little mini wind and rain storm so we see the same things," said Nichols. "The disaster assessment happens in the same way."