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The American Red Cross Continues to Support Tornado Victims

Nebraska Mom and Daughter Card created at shelter

OMAHA, NEB., Tuesday, May 13, 2014 – The American Red Cross continues to help residents across Nebraska who were impacted by Sunday night’s tornado. The Red Cross will close the emergency shelter at Centennial High School at noon because many families who were displaced by the tornadoes have found a safe place to stay with either family or friends.

“As soon as the storms passed, our disaster teams were in damaged communities to help. Since Sunday night, 44 well-trained Red Cross workers have provided shelter to 13 people, delivered hundreds of meals, snacks, waters to crews and homeowners who are in the clean up process,” said Jill Orton, Region Disaster Officer. “In the days and weeks to come, the Red Cross will continue working with emergency officials and local community partners to help people get back on their feet.”


Centennial High School

1301 Centennial Ave

Utica, NE 68456

(402) 534-2321

While the clean-up process is in full swing, many areas are still littered with debris. The Red Cross offers the following tips for those in the affected area to stay safer:

  • Avoid damaged areas as your presence might hamper rescue and other emergency operations and put you at further risk from the residual effects of tornadoes.
  • Stay out of damaged buildings.
  • When it is safe to return home, wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, and sturdy shoes when examining your walls, doors, staircases and windows for damage.
  • Watch out for fallen power lines or broken gas lines and report them to the utility company immediately.
  • Use battery-powered lanterns or flashlights when examining buildings. Avoid using candles.
  • If you smell gas or hear a blowing or hissing noise, open a window and get everyone out of the building quickly. Turn off the gas using the outside main valve if you can, and call the gas company from a neighbor’s home. If you turn off the gas for any reason, it must be turned back on by a professional.
  • Clean up spilled medications, bleaches, gasoline, or other flammable liquids that could become a fire hazard.
  • Take pictures of the damage, both of the building and its contents, for insurance claims.
  • Use the telephone only for emergency calls. Telephone lines are frequently overwhelmed in disaster situations. They need to be kept clear for emergency calls to get through.
  • Watch your animals closely. Keep all your animals under your direct control. Your pets may be able to escape from your home or through a broken fence. Pets may become disoriented, particularly because tornadoes and the heavy rains that accompany them will usually affect scent markers that normally allow animals to find their homes.
  • The Red Cross depends on the generosity of the American people to fulfill our mission. To help disaster victims please contact the American Red Cross, or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

    About the American Red Cross:

    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at