It certainly won't get nearly the media coverage 9/11's volunteer response did more than nine years ago, but South Jersey has once again helped bail out a struggling New York City.
Two township EMTs were among a host of Camden County first responders to volunteer to travel to New York this morning to help the Big Apple overcome the 2 feet of snow the nor'easter dumped there Sunday and Monday.
Jamie and Mike Centron left South Jersey at 7 a.m. to join the "strike team," according to Gloucester Township EMS supervisor June Pacifico.
The husband-wife EMT team will have worked a 12-hour shift today, through 9 p.m., by the time they head back down the New Jersey Turnpike. They will have helped New York City's ambulance crews cut down on a backlog of some 2,000 911 calls since the Northeast's first major winter storm moved up the coast Sunday.
"We go if they need help," Pacifico explained. "In South Jersey, we've gone into Atlantic City for emergencies. We went to Ocean County for the forest fire. If we need help, then they'll come down to help us. It's a mutal-aid situation."
Representatives and equipment of the Voorhees Fire Department, Cherry Hill Fire Department, Gloucester Township EMS, Magnolia EMS and Mt. Laurel EMS reported to Jersey City this morning to await deployment into New York, according to Camden County officials.
"We are proud of everyone that has volunteered their time and talents to assist with this humanitarian effort," said Freeholder Rodney A. Greco, liaison to the Camden County Department of Public Safety. "We thank them for their hard work and dedication. Their selflessness serves as an example to us all."
Greco noted the South Jersey volunteer response "in no way reduces our ability to respond to any situations that may arise here at home."
Crews from Burlington, Somerset and Mercer counties have also provided assistance to New York City.
Pacifico noted at around 4:20 p.m. that Gloucester Township EMT was considering sending a second crew up to New York tonight for a 9 p.m. to 9 a.m. shift.