The American Red Cross continues to help residents of San Bruno, California affected by last week’s massive gas explosion, and is responding to a new wildfire in Colorado that has forced more people from their homes in the Rocky Mountain State.
The explosion last Thursday near San Francisco destroyed almost 50 homes and damaged many others. The Bay Area Red Cross Chapter placed those in need in hotel rooms and closed its shelters over the weekend. Red Cross workers now are meeting with residents to determine their needs for long-term assistance and help them develop recovery plans.
The Red Cross is also distributing snacks, drinks and clean-up items to residents as they return to the affected neighborhoods. The cleaning kits contain mops, brooms, bleach, buckets, masks, shovels, rakes and other materials. Red Cross volunteers and faith-based partners will also be conducting outreach in the neighborhoods to provide emotional support as residents return to the homes.
Meanwhile Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, Jr. declared a State of Emergency after a second wildfire broke out in Loveland, only about 35 miles away from Boulder, where a wildfire has been burning since last week. The new fire in Loveland has destroyed two homes and threatened as many as 150 more. Evacuations have been ordered for about 250 residents.
The Fourmile Canyon fire near Boulder destroyed 166 homes, and is now about 90 percent contained. The Loveland fire is only ten percent contained. The Red Cross in Colorado is providing shelter and food for those affected by both fires, as well as snacks and water for firefighters and emergency responders.
The Red Cross urges everyone to be prepared should an emergency occur by taking three steps: build an emergency kit; make a plan on how your household can respond to emergencies; and be informed about emergencies which could occur where you live and how local authorities will notify you about the situation.
To find out more about what steps you should take to be prepared, visit our web site. To make a financial donation to the Red Cross to help people affected by disasters here in the United States and around the world, people can click, call or text - visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.