Floridians should stay alert as Tropical Storm Fay continues her slow march up the Florida peninsula. The Red Cross is providing food and shelter for affected Florida residents and has more shelters ready in case the massive rain predictions materialize. Fay has left tens of thousands of Florida residents without power and the possibility of flooding and isolated tornadoes is high as the storm pushes northward.
More than 500 disaster relief workers are on the scene, a large majority of them Florida residents who have taken Red Cross training to help their friends and neighbors.
As Fay continues its trip across the state’s peninsula, Red Cross shares the following safety tips for when the storm has passed through an area:
- Keep listening to NOAA Weather Radio or local radio or TV stations for instructions.
- If you evacuated, return home when local officials tell you it is safe to do so.
- In case of a power outage, use flashlights in the dark; do not use candles.
- In case of a power outage, do not open the refrigerator or freezer. An unopened refrigerator will keep foods cold enough for a couple of hours at least. A freezer that is half full will hold for up to 24 hours and a full freezer for 48 hours.
- If you are using a generator, do not attempt to use it indoors, including inside a garage, carport, basement, crawlspace, or other enclosed area, even with ventilation. Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent CO buildup in the home. Be sure to place the generator away from open windows, doors, or vents leading into your home. Install battery-operated CO alarms in your home. Keep the generator dry. Be sure to turn the generator off and allow it to cool before refueling. Plug appliances directly into the generator, or use a heavy-duty, outdoor-rated extension cord.
Those seeking more information about assistance or shelter locations should call their local Red Cross chapter or toll free at 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
BECOME A VOLUNTEER
For this response, the American Red Cross is currently relying on the hundreds of volunteers, who are already trained to respond during a disaster. To find out how you can become a trained Red Cross volunteer and assist in future disasters, please call 1-800-RED CROSS.
All American Red Cross disaster assistance is free, made possible by voluntary donations of time and money from the American people. You can help the victims of thousands of disasters across the country each year by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling and other assistance to victims of disaster. The American Red Cross honors donor intent. If you wish to designate your donation to a specific disaster please do so at the time of your donation. Call 1-800-RED CROSS 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 www.redcross.org.
About the American Red Cross:
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 – not a government agency – and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its humanitarian mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at www.redcrosschat.org.