FARMINGTON, Conn. (September 14, 2023) — Hurricane Lee is threatening parts of New England, including Connecticut, with impacts expected later this weekend. Connecticut may see effects like gusty winds, high surf and the potential for heavy downpours.
The American Red Cross is preparing to respond as Hurricane Lee heads north. Due to the storm’s monstrous size, areas far away from the storm’s center could see Lee’s effects. Even if the storm weakens, the National Hurricane Center warns that will not diminish the storm’s potential for significant impacts. Because of recent heavy rain, the ground is already saturated in many of the areas where Lee may hit, increasing the risk of flooding and downed trees.
The Red Cross urges everyone in Lee’s potential path to monitor their local weather. The Red Cross encourages Connecticut residents to listen to the advice of local authorities and evacuate immediately if asked to do so. Tune into your local radio, NOAA radio or news channel for the latest updates.
We are pre-positioning disaster teams and supplies to be ready to support communities across New England who may be impacted by the storm. We are deploying enough workers and supplies to be able to help thousands of people. This includes as many as 25 shelter teams and 40 Red Cross emergency vehicles standing ready to support a large relief response. We will continue to monitor the situation closely over the coming days as we prepare.
The Red Cross is coordinating closely with government officials and community partners to ensure plans are in place to provide help for families in harm’s way. Additional volunteers and emergency supplies are on standby in case they are needed. The Red Cross has also pre-positioned blood products in the region in advance of the storm and stands ready to provide additional blood products if hospitals need support.
Large storm systems often force the cancellation of blood drives in affected areas. The Red Cross is already experiencing a national blood shortage. Donors of all blood types are urgently needed and there is an emergency need for platelet donors and type O blood donors. The Red Cross urges eligible individuals to give blood and help ensure we can meet the needs of patients whenever and wherever they arise. Schedule an appointment to donate today using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, by visiting RedCrossBlood.org or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
September is National Preparedness Month and being prepared for disasters is important for everyone. Follow these steps to help make sure your family is ready to either evacuate or hunker down if a storm threatens your community.
- Create an evacuation plan. Plan what to do in case you are separated from your family during an emergency and if you have to evacuate. Coordinate your plan with your child’s school, your work and your community’s emergency plans. Plan multiple routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs as required and make plans for pets. If you already have an emergency plan, update it and review with family members so everyone knows what to do if an emergency occurs.
- 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 and pets 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. If you already have a disaster kit, now is the time to make sure the food and water are still okay to consume and that copies of important documents are up to date.
- Be informed. Find out how local officials will contact you during a disaster and how you will get important information, such as evacuation orders.
- Download the free Red Cross Emergency app for instant access to full weather alerts, help preparing for emergency situations and open Red Cross shelter locations.
- Standard homeowners 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 information on flood insurance, please visit the National Flood Insurance Program website at www.FloodSmart.gov.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% 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 CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.