Red Cross Ready to Respond to Hurricane Earl

The American Red Cross is on the ground in fourteen states along the East Coast as Hurricane Earl heads toward North Carolina with sustained winds of 140 mph.

Red Cross shelters are opening in North Carolina, New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, with emergency planning continuing in ten other states along the coast. Up-to-date shelter location information is available on www.redcross.org by clicking “Find a Shelter.”

Hurricane and tropical storm watches and warnings have been issued by the National Hurricane Center from North Carolina to Maine.

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More than 350 trained Red Cross disaster workers have been deployed to North Carolina, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, along with more than 60 emergency vehicles, informed Red Cross Thursday (September 2).

“Hurricane Earl is big and powerful, and even a glancing blow will mean high winds and flooding,” said Joe Becker, senior vice president, Red Cross Disaster Services.

“The Red Cross is ready – from the Carolina coast to Maine – and people in those areas should be prepared, too. We urge residents to stay informed and be prepared should the storm affect their areas.”

In North Carolina, additional Red Cross shelters are on standby to open if needed. The Red Cross has deployed 183 disaster workers to the state to support efforts there, along with 37 emergency response vehicles and two trailers of additional disaster relief supplies to add to what is already in the state.

Should the storm turn toward the New York coastal area, shelter locations have been identified in Nassau and Suffolk counties and New York City.

Further up the coast in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, shelters are ready to open and 171 disaster workers have deployed to the area to assist those who may be affected by the Category 4 hurricane.

The Red Cross has 24 emergency response vehicles in the two states, with two trailers of disaster relief supplies on the way to supplement what is already available in the area.

The Red Cross is working with various state, county and local government officials to determine what their areas will need.

Emergency planning is taking place in North Carolina, South Carolina, New York, Massachusetts, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

People who are evacuating can register on the Red Cross Safe and Well Website, accessible at www.redcross.org, so that friends and relatives can find out how they are.

For those who don’t have internet access, they can call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to register.

The storms in the Atlantic Ocean are causing powerful rip currents. The Red Cross advises anyone visiting the shore areas to swim only on lifeguard protected beaches and within designated swimming areas.

Photo courtesy: American Red Cross

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