I need help contacting 90-year old couple in NJ
November 6, 2012 7:01 AM   Subscribe

I need to check on a 90-year old couple in Chatham, NJ. Can anyone suggest a way to find out how they are doing? The phone doesn't work. :7(

Hey, New Jersey-ites, I need a hand.

A friend of the family has a sister in Chatham (or Chatham Township), NJ, and she & her husband are in their nineties. The phone just rings busy, so no one can get through to them. Is there any way to reach these folks or check on them? The rest of their family is far overseas, and they are really worried.

Google Street View shows a lot of tall trees along the power lines in front of their house (Shunpike Rd.), so I assume their phone is down.

Can I call the town police department's non-emergency number and ask that someone drive over, or even to get a general description of the storm damage in that area?

Thank you for any suggestions!
posted by wenestvedt to Grab Bag (8 answers total)
Can I call the town police department's non-emergency number and ask that someone drive over,

Yes, this is a routine request. What you are asking for is a welfare check.
posted by DarlingBri at 7:01 AM on November 6, 2012 [8 favorites]

Yes, call the non-emergency number and ask whether a welfare check is possible.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 7:01 AM on November 6, 2012

You can call the Police as you suggest, or the Red Cross, as if these folks evacuated to a shelter they keep track of everyone.

Tell the police that you're concerned and ask them to see that these folks are okay.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 7:02 AM on November 6, 2012

Also can ask for more info on www.reddit.com/r/newjersey/ from someone in the area.
posted by pyro979 at 7:08 AM on November 6, 2012

I'm originally from Chatham, I can get a description of the area and try to find someone who could go check in on them. Memail me or @ me on Twitter. I do know that power is on for parts of the town & phones are in a similar situation.
posted by ellebee at 7:17 AM on November 6, 2012 [1 favorite]

If you're on Facebook, you can try posting a request on Jersey Shore Hurricane News which is quite a clearinghouse of people in need and people who want to help. Also can try asking for help via the Twitter hashtag #njsandy and perhaps the #chatham hashtag too.

The Fire Department would probably be helpful as well, or at least direct you to help.

The good news is that Chatham is not one of the most impacted areas. However, just their age (with loss of power) and lack of communication would concern me anyway.
posted by Miko at 7:27 AM on November 6, 2012

Thanks, everyone!!! I just called the police now. This is great.

I've never called the cops on people older than me before! :7)
posted by wenestvedt at 7:50 AM on November 6, 2012 [1 favorite]

Wow, like then minutes later they had sent someone by the house who talked to the folks in question. So fast! I would hate to be a kid throwing a kegger in that town...

*relieved sigh* My dad is already on the phone to the far side of the world to calm everyone down. Thanks to all of you for the suggestions, and to Officer Shorey or Shore of the Chatham Township Police Department for stopping by and then leaving me a voicemail with the good news.
posted by wenestvedt at 8:50 AM on November 6, 2012 [30 favorites]

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