Press Release: Red Cross Responds to Storm Damage Across Mississippi

Red Cross Responds to Storm Damage Across Mississippi

JACKSON, MS, Wednesday, December 26, 2012—The American Red Cross is responding to damage reported in 10 Mississippi counties following severe weather last night.

Red Cross is working with the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and local Emergency Managers in the following counties: Lamar, Forrest, Stone, Pearl River, Wilkinson, Lawrence, Hinds, Jones, Clarke and Lauderdale. Red Cross Disaster Action Team (DAT) members are on the ground in the affected areas assisting with lodging, food, clothing, health services and emotional support for anyone with immediate, disaster-caused needs.

As people return home today to begin the clean-up, Red Cross has several safety steps that should be followed.

  • If possible, leave children and pets with a relative or friend. If not, keep them away from hazards.
  • When the power is out, use flashlights, not candles.
  • Beware of snakes, insects and other animals that may be in or around your home.
  • Look outside for damaged power lines, gas lines, foundation cracks and other exterior damage – it may be too dangerous to enter the home. If you smell gas or hear a hissing noise, leave immediately and contact the fire department.
  • Throw out all food, beverages and medicine exposed, including canned goods and containers with food or liquid that were sealed shut. When in doubt, throw it out.
  • Throw out items that absorb water and cannot be cleaned or disinfected (mattresses, carpeting, cosmetics, stuffed animals and baby toys).
  • Clean hard surfaces (flooring, countertops and appliances) thoroughly with hot water and soap or a detergent.
  • Check the ceiling and floor for signs of sagging. Water may be trapped in the ceiling, or floors may be unsafe to walk on.
  • Be careful when moving waterlogged furnishings or debris that may be heavier.
  • Avoid drinking or preparing food with tap water until you know it’s safe.
  • Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal–burning device inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area. Locate the unit away from doors, windows and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

For Red Cross cold weather safety tips and preparedness information, visit http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/winter-storm.

For assistance with immediate, disaster-related needs, please contact your local Red Cross office, find us on Facebook by searching “Red Cross Mississippi” or follow us on Twitter @RedCrossMiss.

All Red Cross disaster assistance is free and made possible by voluntary donations of time and money from the American people. You can help the victims of this severe weather event in Mississippi by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross Mississippi Region Disaster Relief which enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling and other assistance to those in need.

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