Tropical Storm Isaac is threatening parts of the Caribbean, including Haiti, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and could affect Florida early next week. The American Red Cross is currently moving hundreds of trained disaster workers to Florida and is preparing to open dozens of shelters across the state if needed.
Seven American Red Cross volunteers from Western New York are deploying to Tampa, Florida to assist in the preparations for Tropical Storm Isaac, and will also be a part of any relief efforts following the storm’s potential landfall there early next week:
The Red Cross has 22 Emergency Response Vehicles already in Florida and is moving 28 additional vehicles into the area in advance of Isaac, with an additional 78 vehicles on stand-by if needed. Five truckloads of disaster supplies and cleanup items including rakes, shovels and tarps have been mobilized to send to Florida, and Red Cross disaster warehouses in Georgia and Mississippi are ready to ship additional emergency supplies if necessary. The Red Cross is also working in close collaboration with government officials and community partners to coordinate response plans.
People who may be in the path of the storm can download the new, free Red Cross Hurricane App, which puts real-time information on hurricane safety at user’s fingertips. The app features information regarding Red Cross shelters and a toolkit including a flashlight, strobe light and alarm. The one-touch “I’m Safe” button allows people to use social media outlets to let family and friends know they are okay. People across the country planning to travel to areas predicted to be affected by the storm can use the app to receive weather alerts. The Hurricane app can be found in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for “American Red Cross”.
Anyone wishing to help is asked to consider making a donation today by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-REDCROSS or texting the word 90999 to make a $10 donation (charges will appear on your cell phone bill). Contributions may also be sent to your local Red Cross chapter at 786 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14209.