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Preparing for Gustav: American Red Cross Services


The American Red Cross released this notice on the morning of August 28:

Community Preparedness Information

We're getting ready and we need families and communities to get ready too. Get prepared now. Visit -- click PREPARING for a HURRICANE in the "Find It Fast" box on the right side of the screen for critical preparedness information. Spanish language translations are also available at this site.

Preparing to evacuate:

  •  Listen to NOAA Weather Radio or local radio or TV stations for evacuation instructions. If advised to evacuate, do so immediately.

  •  Know ahead of time where you can go if told to evacuate.

  •  Keep the evacuation place telephone number handy, along with a road map.

  •  Take prescription medications and medical supplies, bedding and clothing, bottled water, battery-operated radio and extra batteries, first aid kit, flashlight, car keys and maps, and important papers.

Assemble a disaster supplies kit:

  •  First aid kit and medications.

  •  Canned food and can opener.

  •  At least three gallons of water per person.

  •  Protective clothing, rainwear, and bedding or sleeping bags.

  •  Battery-powered radio, flashlight, and extra batteries.

  •  Special items for infants, elderly, or disabled family members.

  •  Written instructions on how to turn off electricity, gas and water if authorities advise you to do so. (Remember, you'll need a professional to turn them back on.)

Visit the Safe and Well Web site now:

The Red Cross Safe and Well site allows those directly affected by a disaster to let their loved ones know of their well-being. Residents of affected areas should be encouraged to take advantage of the Safe and Well website and you can use the site to post information prior to evacuation.

As you evacuate, if you have one call to make to before you leave home, call some one you love and tell them you are safe. Then, ask them to register you on the Red Cross Safe and Well site accessible at or

For those that do not have internet access, call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to register yourself and your family. Follow the prompts for disaster information.

Red Cross Preparedness and Disaster Operations Planning

The American Red Cross is preparing for significant operations on the Gulf Coast, concentrating our efforts on Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. The National Hurricane Center models have this storm approaching the central Gulf Coast area.

Red Cross chapters in these states are working with their local partners and local government in order to ensure the proper infrastructure is in place to support the initial phase of large evacuation and sheltering needs. We are as ready as we can be. Today and tomorrow, we are:

  •  Moving nearly 200 mobile feeding trucks across the four states.

  •  Moving more than 100,000 cots, 200,000 blankets, tens of thousands of comfort kits, and ready to eat meals in the coastal states.

  •  Coordinating, recruiting and moving Red Cross workers into the area Thursday and Friday.

  •  Setting up our disaster operational headquarters in Dallas, TX; Baton Rouge, LA; Hattiesburg, MS and Montgomery, AL.

While we are moving significant personnel and supplies into the affected area, all parts of the Red Cross continue to seek input and guidance on how to best serve affected communities. Many of the shelters that are standing up and opening will be done through our partnerships with community organizations, and at the national level we continue to solicit input on how to best coordinate the efforts of all responding organizations. -- Kevin Kellenberger, Manager, Partner Services (NGO), American Red Cross



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