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Red Cross Urges Locals to Reach Out to Friends and Family as Hurricane Matthew Approaches

NEW ORLEANS – October 5, 2016 — Hurricane Matthew could affect the United States later this week, and the American Red Cross is getting ready now for a possible multistate response. From Florida to New England, the Red Cross is finalizing shelter plans and preparing vehicles and supplies. Trained Red Cross disaster relief workers are being mobilized across multiple states.

The Red Cross encourages Louisiana residents with friends and family in potentially threatened areas to reach out to them now if they would like to offer assistance. Additionally, locals should discuss and familiarize themselves with their loved ones’ emergency strategy, as well as develop a plan to touch base with each other once the storm has passed to ensure the safety of those affected.

Both locals and those they care for on the East Coast are encouraged to download the Red Cross Emergency App, providing hurricane updates, assistance developing an emergency plan, and a "Family Safe" feature helping people to stay connected during a disaster. The Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross, texting GETEMERGENCY to 90999 or going to

The Red Cross is urging people in the potential path of Hurricane Matthew to stay informed about the storm and recommends taking these three steps to prepare now: 1) build a disaster kit; 2) come up with an emergency plan; and 3) be informed about how local authorities will notify you during a disaster, whether through local media or NOAA Weather Radio stations or channels. 

HOW TO HELP The work of the American Red Cross starts long before a hurricane makes landfall in the United States. For example, we have warehouses stocked with disaster relief supplies, thousands of trained workers, and more than 320 mobile response vehicles on standby year-round to be ready to help people in need. If we didn’t maintain these resources 24/7, we couldn’t get help to people in a timely fashion—but we depend on donations from the American public to be ready.

Help people affected by disasters like hurricanes, floods and countless other crises by making a donation to the Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small across the United States. Visit, call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.


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, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.