(Sept. 12, 2018 – CHARLOTTE, N.C.) – As the American Red Cross prepares for a large relief effort across multiple states in response to Hurricane Florence, the Greater Carolinas Region, in collaboration with emergency management partners, is opening shelters for evacuees.
“This is a dangerous storm and could have significant impact inland.” said Angela A. Broome Powley, regional executive officer, American Red Cross Greater Carolinas Region. “As we prepare to open 5 shelters in Mecklenburg County for evacuees, we urge anyone in the path of Florence to get ready now and follow requests from emergency management officials. We stand ready to open additional shelters across our region as needed.”
OPENING WEDNESDAY AT 8 a.m.
East Mecklenburg High School
6800 Monroe Rd., Charlotte, N.C.
South Mecklenburg High School
8900 Park Rd., Charlotte, N.C.
OPENING WEDNESDAY AT NOON
North Mecklenburg High School
11201 Old Statesville Rd., Huntersville, N.C
Olympic High School
4301 Sandy Porter Rd., Charlotte, N.C.
OPENING WEDNESDAY AT 4 p.m.
Ardrey Kell High School
10220 Ardrey Kell Dr., Charlotte, N.C.
If someone needs to find a shelter, they can visit redcross.org/shelter, check the Red Cross Emergency App or call 1 800-RED CROSS. Anyone who plans to stay in a Red Cross shelter should bring prescription medications, extra clothing, pillows, blankets, hygiene supplies, important documents and other comfort items. They should also include any special items for children, such as diapers, formula and toys, and durable medical equipment and/or assistive technology if applicable. While Red Cross can provide medical equipment and/or assistive technology loaners, it may take a little time depending on inventory on hand and availability of delivery systems to get them to the shelter.
DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP Download the free Red Cross Emergency App to find shelter information and weather and emergency alerts for more than 35 different situations. Red Cross apps are available in smartphone app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.
HURRICANE SAFETY People living in the path of the hurricane should listen to local officials and obey any evacuation orders. As the storm passes, folks should stay informed by listening to local news or NOAA weather radio for updates. Other safety steps include:
- · Know the difference between a Hurricane Watch and a Hurricane Warning.
- o A Hurricane Watch means conditions are a threat within 48 hours. Review your hurricane plans. Get ready to act if a warning is issued, and stay informed.
- o A Hurricane Warning means conditions are expected within 36 hours. Complete your storm preparations and leave the area if directed to do so by authorities.
- o Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings: Take these alerts seriously. They often bring life-threatening flooding and dangerous winds.
- · Listen to local radio, NOAA radio or TV stations for the latest information and updates and obey any evacuation orders from local officials.
- · Be prepared to evacuate quickly. You can find shelters by visiting redcross.org or by downloading the free Red Cross Emergency App.
- · Fill your car's gas tank in case an evacuation notice is issued.
- · Build an emergency kit that contains supplies for about three days, to include a gallon of water per person per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight and extra batteries, a first aid kit, medications and copies of important documents. Remember items for young children such as diapers, and family members with special medical needs.
- · Create an evacuation plan for your household. Learn about how your community responds to hurricanes and plan routes to local shelters. If you already have a disaster kit, replenish any items missing or in short supply, especially medications or other medical supplies.
- · Don’t forget your pets. Bring them indoors and maintain direct control of them. Prepare an emergency kit for your pets, including sturdy leashes or pet carriers, food and water, bowls, cat litter and pan, and photos of you with your pet in case they get lost. Additional pet safety tips are available.
HOW YOU CAN HELP The Red Cross depends on financial donations to be able to provide disaster relief immediately. Help people affected by Hurricane Florence by visiting redcross.org, calling 1- 800-RED CROSS or texting the word FLORENCE to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from this disaster.
The Red Cross honors donor intent. Donors can designate their donation to Hurricane Florence relief efforts by choosing that option when donating on redcross.org or on 1-800-RED CROSS. The best way to ensure your donation will go to a specific disaster is to write the specific disaster name in the memo line of a check. We also recommend completing and mailing the donation form on redcross.org with your check.
PLEASE GIVE BLOOD The Red Cross has pre-positioned additional blood products and stocked many of our hospitals to capacity in areas of the Southeast likely to be impacted by the storm over the upcoming days. We are prepared to send more blood products to ensure patient needs continue to be met. Ahead of the storm, Red Cross Blood Services employees are also preparing facilities and equipment in case of power outages by ensuring back-up generators are working properly and vehicles are fueled.
We encourage eligible donors in parts of the country unaffected by the storm to give blood or platelets to help ensure a sufficient blood supply. Some Red Cross blood drives have already been cancelled and additional cancellations are expected in the Southeast in the days ahead. Platelet and type O blood donations are especially needed right now. Appointments can be made by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
PLEASE VOLUNTEER The Red Cross depends on volunteers to deliver its mission of alleviating human suffering in the face of emergencies. Please visit redcross.org/volunteer to learn about opportunities available to help with Hurricane Florence relief efforts and other opportunities in your community.
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; 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. Follow us at Facebook.com/redcrossgreatercarolinas.