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Red Cross: This Is A Time To Come Together As A Community And Make Sure Your Neighbors Are Okay

DETROIT (WWJ) - Red Cross volunteers have been making their way across flooded areas of Metro Detroit to help people displaced from their homes.

Spokesperson John Mozena says the flooding is wide-spread, and it's been difficult trying to get a handle on where the biggest problems are.

"We couldn't magically go any faster on the road than anybody else could, in fact, state police asked our teams to stay off the roads during the worst of it last night - we are determining with emergency management - really the scope of the problem - the situation and disaster - and we are still trying to get as much information as possible."

Mozena says his volunteers are getting lots of calls from Dearborn where homeowners are reporting sewage back-ups.

"We are asking people, primarily, to help us out; to make sure that they are checking on people in their own communities and in their own neighborhoods - especially seniors - people with disabilities - maybe people with babies, and really try to come together in the community at this time, There is only so much we can do right now - there is only so much emergency management can do right now - this is a time to come together as a community and make sure your neighbors are okay," Mozena said.

He expects the Red Cross will have to set up temporary shelters Tuesday night for people whose homes are flooded.

Juan Holgan of Melvindale became stranded along the Southfield service drive near Outer Drive and had already been waiting for a tow-truck for hours - with no help in site.

"I tried to go through the road, I didn't even know it was that deep, but it was very deep, so my car is just cut off," said Holgan.

He said the water was above his knees when he exited the car.

Eric Moore of Southfield was among those trying to make it to Metro Airport on Tuesday.

He had to exit at Outer Drive exit off Southfield, as the road was impassable due to flooding of over 12 feet on the road.

"It's borderline national disaster," said Moore. "This is just one of many freeways that are flooded up - across the city ... as you can see the sign reads 14 feet, 3 inches, (sign on overpass) which gives us a clear indication that - that's at least 12 feet of water -- on the freeway. I've never seen anything like this."

Normally a 45 minute commute to the airport Moore estimates that today's drive will be about three hours.

Kevin Cam of Detroit made a turn-around on Annapolis street due to the high water levels, "too deep," he said, "didn't want to stall out."

Even though he avoided the deepest part of the water on the road - his car was damaged while trying to avoid being another victim to the flooded streets, and he's looking at damage in the thousands to his car. "This is a mess," he said.

Katrina Matthews, 20, a student, was stuck in the flood at 13 Mile and Mound in Warren last night. The water seeped up to the hood. She was forced to wade through the waist-deep flood waters and walk several miles to her home.

"My car is completely done, hydro-locked, it's finished and I don't have credit since I'm a college student, so I don't have another way to get a car - so I'm kind of out of luck right now."


MORE: State Activates Emergency Operations Center After Storm Dumps Over 5 Inches Of Rain

State Police Urge Drivers To Avoid Freeways Heading Into Tuesday Morning

Metro Detroit Residents Cope With Flooded Homes, Streets

Aftermath Of Torrential Storms Leaves Thousands Without Power

Detroit Zoo Closed Tuesday For Cleanup After Record-Breaking Rainfall

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TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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