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Area hotels play temporary home to Sandy survivors

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Albany/HV: Area hotels play temporary home to Sandy survivors
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Sandy victims have traveled as far north as Saratoga and Clifton Park seeking shelter, heat and electricity. Our Brooke Selby spoke with some of the affected families who've found temporary refuge at local hotels.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- For one Sandy survivor who didn't want to be identified, images of the aftermath just don't equate.

"The pictures you see on TV don't come close to what it’s like."

It’s hard to imagine areas impacted any worse than what we've seen, but many of those displaced by the storm say the same thing after escaping their ravaged neighborhoods Some of those people have driven as far north as the Hilton Garden Inn in Saratoga Springs seeking refuge and tranquility.

Gail Wayman of Short Hills, NJ said she “Stayed about three days. Right after the hurricane, we lost power at about six o'clock that evening."

So instead, they came north. Phil Tracy from Nyack estimates it could be months before he can return home.

Tracy said, “The elevator equipment was ruined, so it's going to be quite some time before they're able to replace those and make it livable for me because, of course, I can't live on the third floor without an elevator."

With so many survivors, many questions are still unanswered.

Wayman said they “Just have no idea at this juncture when we will be able to return."

So area hotels are doing their best to make special accommodations for those in need of an extended stay.

Tracy said the hotel "Immediately knocked like 25 or 30 percent off the daily rate."

In addition to hosting displaced victims, the hotel is also doing a donation drive for Sandy survivors.

For some, it’s not just the availability of gas Upstate, it’s a closer connection.

Elizabeth Knewzovich of the Hilton Garden Inn Saratoga said they’ve “ Had large families to single people come up because of their friends and families."

Wayman said, “We figured it's just getting too cold and my mom and brother and sister-in-law live in Queensbury.”

But for Phil Tracy, even though he lost everything, he is just grateful to have survived.

Tracy said, “People still are pretty much out of contact of rescue people and all that. I mean, I feel like I got off pretty damn lucky."

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