Video: Spring Floods and Tornadoes

May 12, 2010

Check out the latest update on how we are serving communities affected by severe floods and tornadoes in Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Tennessee.

Press Release: Red Cross Opens Another Shelter

September 29, 2009


American Red Cross opens third shelter in Georgia
Disaster assessment indicates need in Gwinnett County

ATLANTA, September 28, 2009 – The American Red Cross opened another shelter in Georgia to meet the needs of residents living in Gwinnett County.

Red Cross disaster assessment reports indicated early Monday morning that a shelter in Gwinnett would be necessary.

The Red Cross initially opened seven shelters when flooding in the Southeast began, including one in Gwinnett County, which closed on Wednesday of last week. As of this weekend, two shelters remained open to provide food, mental health counseling and emotional support for residents throughout the affected areas.

“We are constantly looking at the needs of the community,” said Fran O’Shaughnessy, director of operations for the Red Cross response to the Georgia flooding. “Sheltering is a fluid thing during disasters because we adapt as the needs of our clients change.”

The shelters currently open in Georgia are:

o Cobb County
   Cobb County Civic Center
   548 South Marietta Parkway
   Marietta, GA 30060

o Gwinnett County
    Zoar United Methodist Church
    3895 Zoar Church Road  
    Snellville, GA 30039

o Cherokee County
   Cherokee Recreation and Parks Agency (South Annex)
   7545 Main St. Building 200
   Woodstock, GA 30188

To date, the American Red Cross has provided 1,643 overnight stays for nearly 500 residents in Georgia Red Cross shelters.

The Red Cross Disaster Call Center has fielded questions and requests for help from more than 2,800 people in our community. Those who have been affected by the flooding who need help can call 404-870-4440.

Thirteen Red Cross disaster assessment teams have been moving through affected areas. Preliminary reports indicate that 2,421 homes in Georgia have been affected; 661 of which are destroyed, 620 with major damage.

Through mobile outreach into flood-affected areas, Red Cross caseworkers are connecting one-on-one with people in need and providing financial assistance for food, clothing, shelter and health-related concerns. Along with providing emotional support, caseworkers can direct clients to recovery resources in the community, including Red Cross Distribution Centers for clean-up supplies (mops, brooms, pails, etc.) and personal hygiene items.

The Red Cross is working with emergency partners in hard-hit communities to establish Distribution Centers for clean-up items and bottled water, which will be replenished throughout the day. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday at the following locations:

o Lawrenceville Fire Dept. Station 20
   1801 Curse Road
   Lawrenceville, GA 30044

o Best Buy – Douglasville
   6875 Douglas Blvd.
   Douglasville, GA 30135

o Powder Springs Police Department
   4483 Pineview Drive
   Powder Springs, GA 30127

o Austell Shopping Center
    5875 Love St.
   Austell, GA 30168

Since flooding began, the Red Cross:

• Has provided nearly 1,643 overnight shelter stays for about 500 affected residents and has provided more than 20,000 meals

• Has had 426 volunteers and staff from 18 states on the ground in affected areas to support the disaster-caused needs of clients

• Has had 21 Emergency Response Vehicles serving as mobile and fixed site feeding stations

• Has provided more than 28,334 bulk items including bleach, comfort kits, clean-up kits and bottled water.

The U.S. government has declared 17 of the 20 affected counties in Georgia as federal disaster areas – Bartow, Carroll, Catoosa, Chattooga, Cherokee, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fulton, Gwinnett, Heard, Newton, Paulding, Rockdale, Stephens and Walker.

Southeast Floods: Updated Stats

September 28, 2009

The following information shows our total service delivery since the beginning of the Georgia floods:

Shelters opened: 7
Shelter Overnight Stays: 1,643*
Meals served: 12,715*
Snacks served: 11,495*
• Supplies distributed (like Clean up kits): 28,334*
Emergency Response Vehicles on the ground: 21*
Mental Health Consultations: 507*
Health Services Consultations:373*
Red Cross workers involved: 605*

Press Release: Lending A Hand To Flood Victims

September 24, 2009


Red Cross lending a hand to flood victims unable to go home

 WASHINGTON, September 24, 2009 – The American Red Cross sheltered more than 420 people in Georgia and Tennessee overnight, a signal that even though flood waters are slowly receding, many are still unable to return to their homes.

The Red Cross has more than 200 volunteers and staff and 18 Emergency Response Vehicles(ERVs) in the area with more on standby. Clean up and comfort kits are being distributed and almost 2,000 meals have been served to those affected by the flooding. Officials say early estimates show as many as 3,000 homes may be affected with damages estimated at $250 million.

Red Cross is partnering with Southern Baptist Convention which has one mobile kitchen in operation and another on alert if needed. Other partners include Samaritan’s Purse, Georgia Association of Food Banks, Church of Latter Day Saints, Church World Service, and NECHAMA.

“Our focus is on making people as comfortable as possible, feeding them and taking care of their immediate needs,” said Joe Becker, Red Cross Disaster Services senior vice president, “we have the workers, equipment and supplies here on the ground to do that with more on standby if needed.”

As the waters recede, the Red Cross issues these steps people should take to remain safe as they return to their neighborhoods:

• Return home only when officials have declared the area safe.s
• Before entering your home, look outside for loose power lines, damaged gas lines, foundation cracks or other damage.
• Parts of your home may be collapsed or damaged. Approach entrances carefully. See if porch roofs and overhangs have all their supports.
• Watch out for wild animals, especially poisonous snakes that may have come into your home with the floodwater.
• 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!
• Do not use water that could be contaminated to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, wash hands, make ice or make baby formula.
• Contact your local or state public health department for specific recommendations for boiling or treating water in your area after a disaster as water may be contaminated.

Help people affected by disasters like the current floods by donating to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. On those rare occasions when donations exceed Red Cross expenses for a specific disaster, contributions are used to prepare for and serve victims of other disasters. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for disasters and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance to victims of all disasters. Call 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish). Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund may be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013. Internet users can make a secure online contribution by visiting

Disaster Alert: Tornadoes in Oklahoma

April 27, 2009

Disaster Alert

A tornado touched down in Garfield County, OK which damaged structures and left more than 1,000 residents without power Saturday. Other tornadoes touched down in Butler and Leavenworth Counties, KS, causing damage to outbuildings, with some minor damage to homes. The Central Oklahoma Chapter deployed a Disaster Action Team (DAT), opened a respite center and provided clean-up kits to the affected area residents.

SC Wildfires: Press Release 4.26.09

April 27, 2009

newsreleaseAmerican Red Cross Opens Emergency Aid Station for Fire Clients

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – The American Red Cross has opened an Emergency Aid Station in the parking lot of the Barefoot Resort Clubhouse located at 4980 Barefoot Resort Bridge Road in North Myrtle Beach. Red Cross volunteers are offering assistance to meet health and emotional care needs as well as snacks and information. Anyone affected by the wildfires should stop by the Station set up from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily until further notice.

Client caseworkers will be in the affected neighborhoods in both North Myrtle Beach and Conway from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. this week also. They will assist clients whose primary homes were damaged with their emergency, immediate needs. Any fire victims who have not made contact with the American Red Cross about their disaster-caused needs should call the Coastal South Carolina Chapter at 843-477-0020.

“We are taking care of people affected by disaster, and we are taking care of the emergency responders. It’s what we prepare for, and it’s what we do when the time comes. We are proud to serve our community in this role,” said Angela Nicholas, Coastal South Carolina Chapter Chief Executive Officer.

The American Red Cross has served more than 15,000 meals and snacks and delivered more than 300 clean-up and comfort kits since the wildfires in Horry County began Aug. 22.

The aid stations are not drop-off points for goods. If you have goods to donate, please call 2-1-1, the United Way community information line for social services.


Red River Floods: Clean-up Kits Available

April 6, 2009

Free kits can be picked up from the Minn-Kota Chapter Office

Red River Floods: Clean-Up Kit

Area residents who are recovering from flood damage to their homes can request a free clean-up kit from the American Red Cross. The kits contain a mop, broom, bucket, cleaning solutions, sponge, trash bags, and a scrub brush. Kits can be picked up from the Minn-Kota Chapter office, located at 2602 12th Street North in Fargo. For more information, contact the chapter at 701-364-1800.


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