Power restored for tenants of Amsterdam apartment complex
Updated 10:47 p.m.
AMSTERDAM Residents of a 100-unit apartment complex in the city spent a third day without power Tuesday as contractors scrambled to replace electrical gear damaged in a weekend car accident.
Power was restored Tuesday night and residents were told they could return home around 8:45 p.m., according to the Montgomery County Emergency Management Office. Shortly after, the office posted on its Facebook page that power had to be turned off again briefly to allow for further repairs but that it should be back on by midnight.
The American Red Cross of Northeastern New York established an emergency shelter at St. Ann’s Episcopal Church around 8 p.m. Monday, providing warmth and food for 17 people. But property manager Birgit Wood said many of the roughly 400 residents of the Woodrow Wilson Townhouses sought shelter with friends and family.
The Red Cross got a call from a resident and the apartment complex and established the shelter in cooperation with the Montgomery County Emergency Management Office, according to Red Cross spokeswoman Jaime L. Watson.
The apartment complex is powered completely by electricity, so there was no heat, hot water or functioning appliances.
Shelter occupants had breakfast and lunch Tuesday and dinner was planned for later in the day.
“We’ll continue to stay open as long as there’s a need,” Watson said.
Contractors had been on the scene trying to replace the gear since soon after the crash, Wood said.
St. Ann’s Episcopal Church at 37 Division St. had plenty of room for the 20 cots set up there — roughly 200 cots were trucked in just in case they were needed, shelter manager Robert Barth said, describing the accommodations as “first class.”
The church made a television and DVDs available for children, and there were toys for the kids, as well.
Barth, of Greenwich, joined Red Cross volunteer Erik Gebhardt of Clifton Park and AmeriCorps worker William Harkins of Albany to manage the shelter during the day Tuesday. They all arrived at 6 a.m. and expected to be relieved by a night crew at 6 p.m.
But many of those who stayed at the shelter Monday night weren’t there Tuesday. They went to work. Others were students, one of whom told shelter managers she had perfect attendance at school and didn’t plan to miss a day.
Subway donated food that was served for breakfast: egg sandwiches, in addition to coffee and other beverages, Barth said. The Red Cross purchased a sandwich platter from a local grocery store with meats and cheeses, and the shelter team was considering options for dinner Tuesday afternoon.
The Woodrow Wilson complex was inaccessible later Tuesday afternoon — a utility crew had the entrance blocked off while workers prepared to tie in electrical lines.