Tropical Storm Fred will make landfall in the panhandle of Florida today, bringing heavy rain to the area. The American Red Cross is preparing to shelter and support families in the path of this storm if needed.
Fred is expected to move to the northeast, carrying heavy rain to Alabama, Georgia and both North and South Carolina this week, moving into the Mid-Atlantic states Wednesday.
People in the storm’s track should monitor local weather conditions and listen to the advice of local authorities. Check emergency kits now and have enough supplies on hand for several days.
The Red Cross has pre-positioned shelter and relief supplies in advance of the storm and has volunteers ready to help if needed. In coordination with local officials, the Red Cross is prepared to open shelters in Florida if requested. The Red Cross is also coordinating with community partners and emergency responders to be ready to provide aid after Fred passes if needed.
It’s important to remember that responding to disasters is a team effort and no single organization can do it alone — this is particularly true in this current environment.
WHAT YOU SHOULD DO NOW
- If advised to evacuate, go immediately to a safe place.
- Don’t forget your pets. Bring them indoors and keep a close eye on them. Prepare an emergency kit for your pets with leashes, carriers, food, water, bowls, litter, litterbox and photos of you with your pet in case you are separated.
SAFE SHELTER COVID-19 has not changed the Red Cross mission. We are providing the same types of support we always have, and ensuring people have a safe place to stay during disasters is a critical part of that support. How we support sheltering efforts may be different in each community, depending on local emergency plans and the scale of the disaster. In most cases, we plan to open group shelters for people evacuating in the face of tropical storms.
To help keep everybody safe, everyone in Red Cross emergency shelters is required to wear face coverings. In addition, we’re using health screenings, enhanced cleaning procedures and encouraging social distancing as much as possible.
The Red Cross helps anyone in need after a disaster, and everyone is welcome in our shelters.
We encourage people who plan to stay in a Red Cross shelter to bring prescription medications, extra clothing, pillows, blankets, hygiene supplies, other comfort items and important documents. Don’t forget to bring any special items for children, such as diapers, formula and toys, or for family members who have unique needs
Anyone who needs a safe place to go can find information for open Red Cross shelters on redcross.org, 1-800-RED CROSS (800-733-2767) or the free Red Cross Emergency app which also gives you real time storm information and safety tips. The Emergency app is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps .
- Turn around, don’t drown! Stay off the roads. If you must drive and you encounter a flooded roadway, turn around and go another way.
- Follow evacuation routes and do not try to take shortcuts because they may be blocked.
- If you are staying home, decide your best protection for high winds and flooding. Take shelter in a designated storm shelter or an interior room for high winds.
- Stay away from glass windows and doors.
- If you live in an area prone to flooding, move to higher ground before flooding begins.
- Tune into your local radio, NOAA radio or news channels for the latest updates.
- Stay away from floodwaters. Beware of snakes, insects and other animals that may be in or around floodwaters and your home.
- Keep children and pets away from hazardous sites and floodwaters.
- If power lines are down, don’t step in puddles or standing water.
HOW YOU CAN HELP Support people affected by disasters like storms and countless other crises by making a gift to Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift is a commitment to helping people in need, and every single donation matters. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Visit redcross.org, call 800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.