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Red Cross Helping People Begin to Recover After Flooding
Response Vehicles Driving Through Southern New Jersey Neighborhoods Providing Relief Supplies
TINTON FALLS, NJ, January 26, 2016 – The American Red Cross continues to provide help to people affected by flooding during the massive winter storm that hit New Jersey this past weekend. Red Cross volunteers are distributing relief items including clean-up kits with mops, buckets, bleach, trash bags, shovels and more to help people whose homes were damaged by flooding during the storm. Volunteers are driving Red Cross response vehicles into some of the hardest hit areas in Atlantic, Cape May and Ocean counties, including Atlantic City, Holgate and the Wildwoods.
The Red Cross, in cooperation with government partners, opened shelters on Saturday in Barnegat, Woodbine and Atlantic City to welcome those who had evacuated their homes. Volunteers were on hand to help 59 people who stayed overnight and met one-on-one with people to help them plan their recovery and receive help from other agencies. This support also included financial assistance, depending on individual circumstances.
“Our compassionate volunteers are out in the affected communities, distributing relief supplies to assist people as they clean up their flood-damaged homes,” said Steven Sarinelli, regional disaster officer, American Red Cross New Jersey Region. “The Red Cross will continue to help those in need as they begin the steps toward recovery.”
As residents begin to clean up, the Red Cross encourages people to remember the following safety tips when returning home after flooding:
- Before entering your home, look outside for loose power lines, damaged gas lines, foundation cracks or other damage.
- 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!
For more information about flood safety, visit redcross.org.
At this time, the American Red Cross New Jersey Region is fortunate to have volunteers who are trained, ready and willing to support our response to the flooding in our communities. People interested in volunteering with future disaster responses can learn more and register online at redcross.org/volunteer.
HOW TO HELP
All Red Cross disaster assistance is free, made possible by voluntary donations of time and money from the American people.
You can help people affected by disasters like flooding and winter storms or countless other crises by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Donate by visiting redcross.org calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting 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 redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
About the American Red Cross in New Jersey
The American Red Cross provides programs and services to a population of 8.8 million in New Jersey. The Red Cross trains and mobilizes more than 5,800 volunteers who support the delivery of services throughout the state. In New Jersey last year, the Red Cross responded to 889 local disasters, mostly home fires, helping 1,820 displaced families; collected 88,439 units of blood through blood drives and Red Cross Blood Donation Centers; provided 3,920 military family case services with emergency messages, helping families find assistance and/or get counseling and referrals; and trained 117,088 individuals with life-saving skills in preparedness, CPR, AED use, first aid and aquatics. Follow us on Twitter @NJRedCross.