Friday, October 26, 2012

2 Western New York Volunteers Deploying to Assist in Hurricane Sandy Response

Red Cross preparing to respond across east coast if needed

BUFFALO, NY, October 26, 2012 – Hurricane Sandy may take aim at the eastern coast of the United States as early as this weekend, and from Florida to Maine, the American Red Cross is placing shelter locations, trained disaster workers, vehicles and supplies on alert to respond if needed. The Red Cross is also working in close collaboration with government officials and community partners to coordinate potential response efforts.

2 volunteers from the Western New York region will deploying ahead of the storm to assist in those response efforts. Michael Hoplight of Niagara Falls will be leaving for Albany this evening to serve as a logistics supervisor, and Tara Hughes of Amherst is leaving for White Plains, NY Saturday, where she will serve as the Disaster Mental Health lead for New York State. In addition, Emergency Response Vehicles from Buffalo and Jamestown are on alert to be sent to affected regions as needed, and it is expected that several additional volunteers from the Western New York region will be deployed to assist in the response to Hurricane Sandy in the coming days.

The American Red Cross encourages people in the possible path of Hurricane Sandy to keep informed about the storm’s progress and prepare now in case their community is affected. The American Red Cross Hurricane App puts lifesaving information right in the hands of people who live in or who visit hurricane prone areas. This free app—available in English or Spanish—is for use on both iPhone and Android platforms. It gives users instant access to local and real time information on what to do before, during and after hurricanes. The app also includes a number of features that allow people to monitor personalized weather alerts in locations where family and friends reside and share information with others in their social networks who might also need it.

Other features of the app include:

·         One touch “I’m safe” messaging that allows users to broadcast reassurance to family and friends via social media outlets that they are out of harm’s way;
·         Location-based NOAA weather alerts for the United States and its territories users can share on social networks;
·         Remote monitoring of personalized weather alerts where family and friends reside
·         Locations of open Red Cross shelters;
·         Simple steps and checklists people can use to create a family emergency plan;
·         Preloaded content that gives users instant access to critical action steps, even without mobile connectivity;
·         Toolkit with flashlight, strobe light and audible alarm; and
·         Badges users can earn through interactive quizzes and share on social networks.

The Hurricane can be found in the iTunes or Google Play app stores by searching for American Red Cross. The Red Cross First Aid App helps people learn what to do in an emergency in case help is delayed. Download all of the preparedness apps at People can go to for additional information and resources. 

The American Red Cross spends an average of more than $360 million each year preparing for and responding to disasters across the country and around the world. Those wishing to help people affected by disasters such as Hurricane Sandy are asked to make a donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief by visiting, calling 1-800-REDCROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

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