TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - September is National Preparedness Month, the perfect time for people to get their household ready in case an emergency should occur.
The American Red Cross prepares all year for disasters and urges everyone to Be Red Cross Ready too.
Every 8 minutes, the Red Cross responds to a disaster, and the vast majority of these are home fires. By having an emergency plan and kit, families can react quickly when a disaster strikes.
The Red Cross encourages everyone to take three important action steps to get prepared:
- Build a kit – Build an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you if you must evacuate. Include items such as water, non-perishable food, a flashlight and extra batteries, a battery-powered radio, first aid kit, and medications.
- Make a plan – Talk with members of your household about what to do during emergencies. Plan what to do in case you are separated and choose two places to meet—one right outside your home in case of a sudden emergency such as a fire, and another outside your neighborhood, in case you cannot return home.
- Be informed – Know what kinds of emergency situations may occur where you live, where you work, and where you go to school. Get trained in First Aid and CPR/AED so you’ll know what to do in an emergency if help is delayed. Don’t forget your pets, plan for them too.
- Download Red Cross apps with emergency alerts and content on what to do before, during and after emergencies available in English or Spanish. Parents can download the Monster Guard: Prepare for Emergencies App for kids and teenagers to learn how to prevent emergencies and what to do if one occurs. Apps can be downloaded for free by searching for ‘American Red Cross’ in app stores or visiting redcross.org/apps.
- Severe weather events can have a significant impact on the ability of the Red Cross to collect life-saving blood products due to canceled blood drives and decreased donor turnout in impacted areas. It is the blood already on hand that helps those in need. Each day, the Red Cross must collect about 13,000 blood donations and more than 2,500 platelet donations to meet the needs of accident victims, cancer patients and children with blood disorders. Eligible donors are encouraged to schedule a donation appointment by using the Blood Donor Skill for Amazon Alexa, the Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).