As Hurricane Matthew is approaching the U.S., the American Red Cross is preparing to respond in multiple states and urges people in the path of the storm to get ready too.
“With South Carolina being threatened by Hurricane Matthew, people should stay informed about weather conditions and get prepared now,” said Louise Welch Williams, regional chief executive officer for the Palmetto SC Region of the American Red Cross.
GET READY NOW It’s the best way to be prepared for these dangerous storms. People should:
· Build an emergency kit with a gallon of water per person, per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight, battery-powered radio, first aid kit, medications, supplies for an infant if applicable, a multi-purpose tool, personal hygiene items, copies of important papers, cell phone chargers, extra cash, blankets, maps of the area and emergency contact information.
· Talk with household members and create an evacuation plan. Practicing the plan minimizes confusion and fear during the event. Plan routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs as required and make plans for pets.
· Be informed. Conditions can change quickly; listen to local weather advisories and stay informed about the storms through local media. Learn about your community’s hurricane response plan and use the South Carolina Hurricane Guide to “Know Your Zone” for evacuations. If you are told to evacuate, do so immediately. You may choose to evacuate sooner than alerted if you think you may need additional time.
“The Red Cross is getting ready in states all along the East Coast – calling volunteers and getting supplies, vehicles and relief equipment ready,” said Williams. “Residents should take this time to get ready too.”
People can download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do before, during, and after a hurricane, as well as locations of open shelters. Users can find it in smartphone app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps. Parents can also download the Red Cross Monster Guard App for a fun way to teach children what to do in case of a hurricane.
For more information about preparing for and recovering from hurricanes, download the free Hurricane Safety Checklist from RedCross.org/SC. For updates, follow the Palmetto SC Region of the American Red Cross on Twitter at @RedCrossSC.