Volatile weather is yet again causing trouble for several parts of the U.S.
Red Flag Warnings—indicating grave fire danger—are in effect across several areas in the South and West due to strong winds and low relative humidity. In Arizona, where the Wallow fire still burns, the Red Cross continues to operate a shelter for residents who evacuated their homes.
A wildfire also burned in Hobe Sound, Fla., over the weekend, prompting the evacuation of some residents. Local Red Cross workers were there to provide meals and critical hydration for the firefighters and first responders battling the flames.
Flooding is the concern in other parts of the country. In Crow Agency, Montana, a shelter is open for residents who were forced from their homes last week by the rising waters. On Saturday, Red Cross volunteers began distributing cleanup kits and family recovery kits in Rocky Boy and on the Crow Indian Reservation.
Damage assessment volunteers from the Red Cross are also working in the communities west of Great Falls, Mont. Additionally, assessment teams are going back to the towns of Roundup and Musselshell to assess needs after additional flooding occurred in those areas.
Shelters are also open in North and South Dakota, Vermont, Nebraska and Iowa due to more spring flooding.
Meanwhile, Red Cross relief efforts continue in Mississippi, where floodwaters are slowly receding. Red Cross workers are out in communities along the river to distribute cleanup supplies, snacks and water to residents who were affected.
In western Massachusetts, nearly 250 people spent the night in a Red Cross shelter Sunday night due to the deadly tornado that hit the state close to two weeks ago. At the shelter, the Red Cross is also providing affected residents items such as cleanup kits, work gloves, tarps and rakes, and is traveling through neighborhoods in Hampden and Worcester counties to offer meals and recovery items.
More than half the country has been hit by disasters this spring, including deadly tornadoes, historic floods and wildfires. Since March 31, the Red Cross has initiated 42 disaster relief operations in 29 states. In the course of these operations, the Red Cross has—
- Served more than 3 million meals and snacks;
- Opened more than 270 shelters and provided 31,000 overnight stays;
- Provided more than 65,000 mental health and health consultations;
- Handed out more than 1.4 million relief items like toothbrushes and shampoo, tarps, coolers, rakes and other cleanup supplies; and
- Deployed more than 12,000 trained disaster relief workers from all 50 states.