Red Cross Responds to Flooding in Westmoreland and Armstrong

American Red Cross
...the organization has provided immediate disaster-caused needs, including food, clothing and shelter, for seven adults.

Heavy rainfall Wednesday night into Thursday morning has caused flash flooding across Westmoreland and Armstrong counties. As the local American Red Cross begins to assist the area with recovery, the organization also urges local residents to keep flood safety tips in mind.

In response to the recent flooding, the organization has mobilized local volunteers to provide nearly 500 clean-up kits to township and borough buildings in Westmoreland and Armstrong counties. In addition, the organization has provided immediate disaster-caused needs, including food, clothing and shelter, for seven adults.

Affected residents can pick up clean-up kits at any of the below distribution sites:

Westmoreland

Avonmore Borough Building, 619 Allegheny Avenue in Avonmore

Derry Township Building, 5321 Rt 982 in Derry

Latrobe Municipal Building, 901 Jefferson Street in Latrobe

Allegheny Township Building, 136 Community Building Road in Leechburg

Unity Township Building,154 Beatty County Road in Latrobe

Loyalhanna Township Building, 820 2nd Street in Saltsburg

Armstrong

Ford City Township Building, 1000 4th Avenue & 10th Street in Ford City

Cadogan Township Building, 333 1st Avenue in Cadogan

Kiski Township Building, 1222A Old State Road in Apollo

In the coming days, the organization will be working with community partners, local government officials and emergency management to conduct damage assessment and provide for unmet needs. The local chapter urges affected residents to call the chapter at 724-834-6510.

As individuals in the area begin to navigate their recovery process, the Red Cross offers these flood safety tips for response and recovery:

Responding Appropriately During a Flood

  • Listen to area radio and television stations and a NOAA Weather Radio for possible flood warnings and reports of flooding in progress or other critical information from the National Weather Service (NWS)
  • Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice.
  • Stay away from floodwaters. If you come upon a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off of your feet.
  • When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground and stay there.
  • If you come upon a flooded road while driving, 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. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
  • Keep children out of the water. They are curious and often lack judgment about running water or contaminated water.
  • Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood danger.
  • Because standard homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover flooding, it’s important to have protection from the floods associated with hurricanes, tropical storms, heavy rains and other conditions that impact the U.S. For more flood safety tips and information on flood insurance, please visit the National Flood Insurance Program Web site at www.FloodSmart.gov.
  • Flood Recovery Tips

  • Return home only when officials have declared the area safe.
  • Before entering your home, look outside for loose power lines, damaged gas lines, foundation cracks or other damage.
  • Parts of your home may be collapsed or damaged. Approach entrances carefully. See if porch roofs and overhangs have all their supports.
  • Watch out for wild animals, especially poisonous snakes that may have come into your home with the floodwater.
  • If you smell natural or propane gas or hear a hissing noise, leave immediately and call the fire department.
  • If power lines are down outside your home, do not step in puddles or standing water.
  • Keep children and pets away from hazardous sites and floodwater.
  • Materials such as cleaning products, paint, batteries, contaminated fuel and damaged fuel containers are hazardous. Check with local authorities for assistance with disposal to avoid risk.
  • During cleanup, wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and rubber boots.
  • Make sure your food and water are safe. Discard items that have come in contact with floodwater, including canned goods, water bottles, plastic utensils and baby bottle nipples. When in doubt, throw it out!
  • Contact your local or state public health department to see if your water supply might be contaminated. You may need to boil or treat it before use. Do not use water that could be contaminated to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, wash hands, make ice or make baby formula.