Mitt Romney will participate in a "storm relief event" in Ohio on Tuesday, his campaign said, as the Republican candidate seeks a role in helping Americans cope with a brutal superstorm one week before the US election.

The campaign provided few details late Monday of Romney's participation in the event at a sporting arena in Kettering, in the crucial battleground state.

Romney's team had canceled some campaign events Monday and Tuesday, as had President Barack Obama, who returned to Washington from planned campaigning in Florida to oversee the federal government's response to one of the biggest natural disasters to strike the United States in years.

The Kettering storm relief event is in the same arena where a Romney campaign rally had been previously announced for Tuesday.

Stockcar-racing legend Richard Petty and country music's Randy Owen are scheduled to appear with the Republican nominee.

Mega-storm Sandy, which roared ashore in New Jersey on Monday, has to a large degree overshadowed the home stretch of the neck-and-neck presidential race, and thrown campaign schedules into chaos.

The huge storm brought hurricane-force winds and heavy rains to a wide swath of the US East Coast, impacting tens of millions of people and potentially leaving millions without power for days in the run up to the November 6 election.

Romney's running mate Paul Ryan is now scheduled to visit a campaign "victory center" in La Crosse, in his native state of Wisconsin, where he will thank volunteers who are collecting or delivering items for storm relief efforts, the campaign said.

Romney, who was spending the night in Ohio, urged supporters at campaign rallies Monday in Ohio and Iowa to keep those in the path of the storm in their hearts and prayers, and urged people to contribute to the American Red Cross or other relief operations.