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Idaho Red Cross on Standby to Open Shelters for Flooding Evacuees

Red Cross volunteer helping lady in a shelter
The Red Cross is ready to open evacuation shelters if Idaho residents are displaced as a result of flooding

BOISE, May 17, 2017--With flooding in many areas of our state, the American Red Cross urges Idahoans to prepare for possible evacuations. The humanitarian organization has disaster teams on standby across Idaho and will be ready to respond at a moment’s notice.

“The Red Cross is ready to open evacuation shelters if Idaho residents are displaced as a result of flooding,” says Colleen Tone, regional disaster officer for the American Red Cross of Idaho and Montana. “In the meantime, there is a lot that people can do to prepare themselves and their families for a possible evacuation.”

Here is a list of preparation tips:

Download the free Red Cross Emergency App. The app will help keep you, your family and your pets safe by showing you what to do before, during and after a flood. To download the app, go here: http://www.redcross.org/get-help/prepare-for-emergencies/mobile-apps.

Create and practice a disaster plan: Talk to everyone in your household about what to do if a flood occurs. Decide where you would meet and who you would contact in case of flooding. Assemble and maintain an emergency preparedness kit (see below). Be prepared to evacuate your family and pets at a moment’s notice.

Assemble a flood preparedness kit: You’ll be better prepared to withstand a flood if you have the following items packed and ready to go if you need to evacuate:

  • Water—at least a 3-day supply; one gallon per person per day
  • Food—at least a 3-day supply of non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  • Extra batteries
  • First Aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Emergency blanket
  • Map(s) of the area
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Tools/supplies for securing your home
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Extra clothing, hat, gloves and sturdy shoes or boots
  • Rain gear
  • Camera for photos of damage
  • Heed Flood Warnings: Listen to your local radio and TV stations for updated flood information. A flood WATCH means flooding or flash flooding is possible in your area. A food WARNING means flooding or flash flooding is already occurring or will occur soon in your area. When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground immediately and stay there.

    Stay away from flood waters. If you come upon a flowing stream where water is above your ankle or if you come across a flooded road while driving, stop, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground.

    Share these Red Cross flood preparedness tips with every member of your household. The best protection is to be prepared.

    MAKE A DONATION To help the people affected by disasters, please make a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. Please visit www.redcross.org/idaho or call 1-800-853-2570. Contributions may also be sent to American Red Cross of Idaho, 5380 W. Franklin Road, Boise, ID 83705.

    VOLUNTEER If you want get actively involved in helping others prepare for, live through, or recover from disasters, go to redcross.org/montana to complete a volunteer application. All training is free and open to the public. A background check will be performed on all applicants.

    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 redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.