Thursday, September 20, 2018
Thousands of people in North Carolina and South Carolina still face immediate danger from Florence’s devastating river flooding. The American Red Cross is helping across 60,000 square miles of the southeast, a response which could grow as flooding continues in the coming days. See how the threat from this deadly storm is far from over.
As of Thursday, September 20, 2018, there were more than 75 Red Cross disaster responders from the Colorado and Wyoming Region on the ground helping with the disaster response in South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.
BY LAND AND AIR The Red Cross is working around the clock with our partners to help the tens of thousands of people affected by Florence. Hundreds of roads are still impassable, making it difficult to deliver that assistance. But with our partners, we’re doing all we can to get help to where it is most needed.
The National Guard, U.S. Army and Air National Guard are some of the partners which have provided us with high water vehicles, and in some cases, helicopters, to deliver assistance.
A hospital put out an urgent call for blood and flooding cut off a community shelter at Fairmont Middle School in North Carolina. New Hanover Hospital needed the blood and the shelter requested supplies from the Red Cross North Carolina Emergency Operations Center.
The Air National Guard made two flights with Blackhawk helicopters – one to get the relief supplies to the isolated shelter, including food for a one-month-old baby, and a second to get the blood to the hospital.
Military helicopters were also used to transport Red Cross volunteers to support Hurricane Florence relief efforts in the hard hit areas on the southern coast of North Carolina.
The National Guard is also providing much-needed help getting relief supplies to where they are needed. They sent high water vehicles to our disaster warehouses and drove critically needed supplies to shelters in North and South Carolina.
This is a massive relief response and no one group or organization can do it all. The Red Cross is working with dozens of partners to support disaster relief including AmeriCorps NCCC, Church of the Brethren Children’s Disaster Services, Save the Children, Southern Baptist Disaster Relief and The Salvation Army.
THIS DISASTER IS NOT OVER Florence poured as much as 10 trillion gallons of water in North Carolina alone. Some
rivers have not crested yet and are expected to worsen the flooding situation over the coming weeks. Early estimates show that Florence has already impacted as many as 88,000 homes in North Carolina and South Carolina.
From the start of this response, more than 3,600 Red Cross disaster workers have been on the ground providing shelter, food and comfort to thousands of people right now and more workers are standing by to help in the coming weeks as rivers slowly go down. The Red Cross also has additional shelters ready as more record breaking flooding occurs along multiple rivers in the region.
WHAT THE RED CROSS IS DOING Wednesday night, more than 5,600 people stayed in 73 Red Cross and community shelters. This included approximately 5,200 people in 52 shelters in North Carolina; 300 people in 13 shelters in South Carolina. In total, the Red Cross and other organizations have provided more than 96,000 overnight stays in emergency shelters across the Carolinas and Virginia. The Red Cross has provided 91 percent of these stays.
Working with partners, the Red Cross has served about 300,000 meals and snacks. In partnership with the Southern Baptists, the Red Cross is planning to serve some 100,000 meals per day, which are being prepared in multiple field kitchens.
Volunteer mental health and health services professionals have provided some 9,600 contacts to provide support and care to evacuees. We’ve also distributed more than 3,400 relief items like diapers and comfort kits that contain deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste and other hygiene items for people forced from their homes. Since September 11, more than 4.7 million weather alerts have been sent through Red Cross apps to help people make lifesaving decisions.
More than 3,600 Red Cross disaster workers from all over the country have mobilized to help shelter, feed and support people affected by Florence during this relief operation. The Red Cross has also mobilized more than 140 emergency response vehicles and more than 110 trailers of equipment and supplies.
HOW YOU CAN HELP The Red Cross has launched a massive response to this disaster and depends on financial donations to be able to provide disaster relief immediately. Help people affected by Hurricane Florence by visiting redcross.org, calling 1- 800-RED CROSS or texting the word FLORENCE to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from this disaster.
The Red Cross honors donor intent. Donors can designate their donation to Hurricane Florence relief efforts by choosing that option when donating on redcross.org or on 1-800-RED CROSS.