Flooding, wind and tornadoes from Hurricane Isaias leave major damage
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 5, 2020 | PHILADELPHIA, PA - What was once Hurricane Isaias tracked through Southeastern Pennsylvania on Tuesday, leaving behind a trail of destruction. American Red Cross disaster workers are on the ground helping people affected by the storm.
The Red Cross opened several evacuation centers during the storm, and then provided more than 130 people with a safe, dry place to stay last night. That number is expected to grow tonight as additional call for assistance continue to come in.
Anyone whose home is unlivable because of storm damage and needs a safe place to stay tonight should call 1-800-RED-CROSS.
With power outages expected to linger and flood clean up getting underway, here are some safety tips for dealing with the hazards left behind:
POWER OUTAGE TIPS
• Use flashlights in the dark, not candles. Candles are a fire hazard.
• If you are using a generator, make sure it is kept outdoors in a well-ventilated area, never in a garage or under cover.
• Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. An unopened refrigerator will keep foods cold for only about 4 hours.
• Throw away any food (particularly meat, poultry, fish, eggs and leftovers) that has been exposed to temperatures higher than 40 degrees for 2 hours or more. When in doubt, throw it out!
• A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours, 24 hours if half full and the door remains closed.
• If food in the freezer is colder than 40 degrees and has ice crystals on it, you can refreeze it.
• Turn off and unplug all unnecessary electrical equipment, including sensitive electronics.
FLOOD SAFETY TIPS
• If any gas or electrical appliances were flooded, don’t use them until they have been checked for safety.
• Dispose of any food that has come into contact with flood water.
• Take pictures of home damage, both of the buildings and its contents, for insurance purposes.
• Wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and rubber boots, and be cautious when cleaning up.
• Be careful when moving furnishings or debris, because they may be waterlogged and heavier.
• Throw out items that absorb water and cannot be cleaned or disinfected. This includes mattresses, carpeting, cosmetics, stuffed animals and baby toys.
• Throw out all food, beverages and medicine exposed to flood waters and mud. When in doubt, throw it out. This includes canned goods, plastic utensils, baby bottle nipples and containers with food or liquid that has been sealed shut.
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; rovides international humanitarian aid; and supports ilitary members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers nd the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit http://www.redcross.org/ or http://www.redcross.org/cruz-roja, or visit us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/redcross.