Obama on Hurricane Sandy: Agencies Should Cut Red Tape to Provide Resources

President Obama speaks from the Red Cross headquarters, will tour New Jersey hurricane damage on Wednesday.
3:00 | 10/30/12

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Transcript for Obama on Hurricane Sandy: Agencies Should Cut Red Tape to Provide Resources
Purple heart thing -- Charlie. On the scene doing work every time. We have disaster. Here in the United States of America but obviously -- across is doing outstanding work -- nationally so we want to thank them for their outstanding work. A few things I want to emphasize to the public. At the top this storm is not at all. We've gotten briefings from the National Hurricane Center it is still moving north there are still communities that could be affected. And so I want to emphasize there's still risks of flooding there are still risks of downed power lines. Risks of high winds. And so it is very important for the public to continue to monitor the situation into -- local community listened to your state and local officials. Follow instructions. The more you follow instructions the easier it is. Or first responders to make sure that they are dealing with rumored -- situations so better prepared. Individual families are for the situation. The easier it is going to be for us to -- -- Next obviously I want to talk about. Extraordinary. Hardship that we've seen over the last 48 hours. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the families who lost loved ones unfortunately there happened fatalities. As a consequence of -- sandy. It's not clear. That we've counted up all fatalities at this point. -- obviously this is something it is heartbreaking for the entire nation and we certainly. -- Profoundly for all the families whose lives have been up and and are going to be going through some very tough times over the next several days and perhaps several weeks and months. The most important message I have -- them if that America's where it. We are standing behind you and we are -- to do everything we can't to help you get back on your feet. Earlier today I had a conversation -- governors and many of the mayors in the affected areas. Including. Governor Christie. Governor Cuomo and Mayor Bloomberg. I -- praised them for the extraordinary work that they have done. You know sadly. We are getting more experience. -- these kinds. Big impact storms. Along the East Coast and the preparation -- We're not for the outstanding work that they and their teams. Have already done and will continue to do in the affected regions. We -- seen more deaths. And more are there. So may have done extraordinary work. Working around clock coordination between state local and federal governments has been outstanding. Obviously we're now moving into the recovery -- a lot of most severely affected areas. New Jersey. -- in particular have been pounded by this storm Connecticut. Has taken a big hit. Because. Some of the workers -- -- ahead of time. We've been able to get over thousands -- Officials in place reposition. We've been able to get supplies food medicine. Water out. Emergency generators to ensure that hospitals. And law enforcement officers are able to stay up and running as they are out there responding. We are gonna continue to push as hard as we can't. To make sure that power is -- throughout the region and obviously this is mostly local responsibility. And -- utilities. Gonna have to lean forward but we are doing everything we can't provide them additional resources. So that we can expedite. Getting power and money. In many of these communities are places like New Jersey for example where you've got 89%. Of people without power. We can't have a situation where that lasts for days on end and so my instructions to the federal agency has been. Do not. It's figure out why we can't do something I want to figure out how we do so. I want -- cut through that take I want to cut through bureaucracy. There's no excuse for -- at this point I want every agency to lean forward and make sure that we are getting the resources. Where they need. Where they're needed as quickly as possible. So while want to repeat my message to the federal government. No bureaucracy. No red tape. Get resources where they're needed as fast as possible as hard as possible. And for the duration. Because the recovery process obviously no place like New Jersey is gonna take a significant amount of time. The recovery process in -- lower -- hat. Is gonna take a lot of time and part of what we're trying to do here is also to -- where some resource the can be brought to bear that maybe traditionally are not used. In these kind of disaster. Situations for example there may be military assets that allow us to help move. Equipment to insure that pumping getting the flooding. Out of New York subway systems can move it could receive more quickly. -- -- -- Resource that we can bring to bear to help. Some of the private utilities get their personnel and their equipment in place more swiftly so that we can get power running as soon as possible. So my message to the governors and the mayor's. And threw them to the communities that have been hit so hard. Is that we are going to do everything we can. Get resources to you and make sure that. Any unmet need that I is identified. We are responding to it as quickly as possible I told mayors in the governor's. If they're getting -- for an answer somewhere in the federal government. They can call me personally. At the White House. Now. Obviously. State local federal response is important. But what we do as a community. What we do. As neighbors and his fellow citizens is equally important so a couple of things that I want the public to know they can do first of all because. Our local law enforcement or first responders are big -- to the extent that. Everybody can be out there looking out for their neighbors. Especially older folks I think actually important or -- -- A neighbor nearby you're not sure how -- handling -- power outage. Flooding etc. I go over -- of them knock on the door and make sure that they're -- okay back and make a big difference. The public can be the eyes and ears in terms -- -- -- -- Unmet needs -- but the reason we're here is because the Red Cross knows what it's doing when it comes to. Emergency response and so people all across the country who have not been affected. Now's the time to. Show the kind of generosity that. Makes America the greatest nation on earth. And a good place to express a general officers by contributing to Red Cross. Obviously go on the web site. Red Cross knows what they're going. There -- close contact with federal state and local officials they won't make sure that we get the resources to. Those families as swiftly as possible again I want to thank everybody here -- -- doing such a great job when it comes to that disaster response. The final message I just say -- You know during the the darkness of the storm I think we also -- what's brightest. In America. -- I think all of us obviously good. Shocked by. The force of mother nature as we watched on television -- same time we've also seen. Nurses and it. NYU hospital -- fragile newborns. To safety. We've seen. Incredibly brave firefighters. In Queens waist deep in water. Battling and for -- rescuing people in boats. When my favorite stores down North Carolina. Coast Guard going out to save the sinking ship basin rescue swimmer -- One the rescue swimmer -- and I'm -- I understand. You guys need -- ride. You know that kind of spirit of resilience. And strength. But most importantly looking out for one another. That's why we always bounced back from these kinds of disasters. It's a tough time for a lot of people millions of votes all across eastern seaboard. But. America's top and we're tougher because we pull together we leave nobody behind. We make sure that. We respond. As as a nation. And remind ourselves that. Whenever and Americans indeed all of us stand together to make sure that we're providing help that's necessary so I just want bank. -- incredible response that we party scene but I do want to remind people this is gonna take. This could take some time. It is not going to be easy for a lot of these communities to recover swiftly. And so it's going to be important that we sustain. That spirit of resilience. That we continue to be good neighbors. For the duration until everybody's back on the art thank you very much are right -- -- request.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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