More than two dozen volunteers from NEO deployed to disaster relief operation
The American Red Cross is helping people in multiple states as Hurricane Florence pummels the Carolinas with strong winds, heavy rain and dangerous tidal surges. Twice the size of Louisiana, Florence is inundating communities and leaving hundreds of thousands without power.
Residents of Wilson, North Carolina take refuge in a Red Cross shelter.
Photo credit: Danial Cima/American Red Cross
As Hurricane Florence comes ashore, the Red Cross is providing safe shelter and comfort for evacuees across six states. More than 20,000 people sought refuge in more than 200 Red Cross and community shelters Thursday night to escape the storm’s wrath. View some of their stories here.
As of midnight, 14,000 people were in 124 shelters in North Carolina, and 5,600 people in 59 shelters in South Carolina. An additional 430 people stayed in 23 shelters in Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee and Maryland.
About 2,000 Red Cross disaster workers from all over the country have been mobilized to help shelter, feed and support people affected by Florence, including 29 from Northeast Ohio. Four Emergency Response Vehicles based in Northeast Ohio departed from Cleveland, Akron and Canton today, staffed by two-person crews. They have been assigned to meet in Macon, Georgia.
Volunteers Susie Muetzel and Sue Wisdom prepare to depart Cleveland in an ERV. Photo credit: Jim McIntyre/American Red Cross
Working with partners, the Red Cross has served 47,000 meals and snacks in North Carolina and South Carolina. To bolster relief efforts, the Red Cross is mobilizing nearly 100 emergency response vehicles and more than 120 trailers of equipment and supplies, including 100,000 ready-to-eat meals and enough cots and blankets for more than 42,000 people.
See photos of local media coverage here.
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.
PLEASE GIVE BLOOD More than 140 blood drives have been canceled through early next week due to Hurricane Florence, resulting in over 4,200 uncollected blood and platelet donations. Eligible donors in unaffected areas are urged to make an appointment now to give blood or platelets to help maintain the nation’s blood supply. There is a critical need to platelet and type O blood donations. 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).