Eleven Red Cross volunteers from Kosciusko, Elkhart and St. Joe counties left Saturday for the East Coast, preparing to help open shelters, serve meals and manage operations where Hurrican Sandy is expected to make landfall tomorrow night.
Early this morning, the storm remained on track to become what some weather centers are predicting to be a super storm of historical proportions.
Cities in the path of the storm are Washington, D.C., Baltimore, New York, Philadelphia and Boston and it’s said the it could span over 700 miles.
Additional local volunteers will deploy after the storm hits to manage damage assessment, provide communications and continue to provide shelter operations to all displaced by the storm. Red Cross Volunteers are typically deployed anywhere from 10 days to 3 weeks.
In the Seaside states, the Red Cross is identifying available shelters, assembling disaster teams and coordinating with government and community partners. Preparations occur all year long for storms like Sandy.
NOAA Forecasters predict Hurricane Sandy will blend with two winter weather systems and form a rare megastorm that could spawn damaging winds, nearly a foot of rain and up to 2 feet of snow in some locations. Experts warn such a storm has the potential to be wider and stronger than Irene, which caused more than $15 billion in damage. Some seaboard states and cities have already declared states of emergency.
Those who may be in the path or have loved-ones in the path of the storm can download the new free Red Cross Hurricane App which puts real time information on hurricane safety at anyone’s fingertips. The app features information on Red Cross shelters and a toolkit with a flashlight, strobe light and alarm. The one-touch “I’m Safe” button lets someone use social media outlets to let family and friends know they are okay.
American Red Cross Chapters regularly train community members who are interested in responding to local or national disasters. Call your local chapter for more information.
The American Red Cross helps people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. The American Red Cross is part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. An average of 91 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends is invested in humanitarian services and programs.
The Red Cross is not a government agency; it relies on donations of time, money, and blood to do its work. The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and counsels victims of disasters; provides nearly half of the nation’s blood supply; teaches lifesaving skills; and supports military members and their families.
The Red Cross is a charitable organization and not a government agency. It depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its humanitarian mission.