Release: Prepare Now for Hurricane Ike, 9.6.2008

Red Cross: Prepare now for Hurricane Ike

Friday, Sept. 5, 2008 – While many may believe Louisiana was not heavily affected by Gustav, the American Red Cross continues to mount a huge relief effort to feed and shelter those who are returning home.

Another 24,000 people affected by Gustav are in shelters, and the Red Cross estimates it will spend between $40-$70 million to help people in the Gulf Coast area. Meanwhile, the Red Cross is positioned to help those in the path of Tropical Storm Hanna, and is looking ahead to respond to Hurricane Ike, already considered a dangerous hurricane on a track to hit Florida by the middle of next week.

The American Red Cross Polk County Chapter will be preparing this weekend for the approaching storm by contacting volunteers, checking and rechecking equipment, rehearsing procedures, and watching the weather.

Don’t wait for Hurricane Ike to arrive. Prepare now. Double check your disaster supplies kit. Rehearse plans to shelter or evacuate. Check that all equipment you need is in good working order, and contact family and friends to make sure your support network is in place. Also, follow local news and weather reports for the latest on this hurricane season.

To help people contact their loved ones, and set their hearts at ease, the American Red Cross has its “Safe and Well” website. As you evacuate, and only have time for one call, please call a loved one to let them know you are safe, and ask them to register you on “Safe and Well.”

To register yourself or someone else, go to http://www.redcross.org and click on the link on the right to register as “Safe and Well.” Then follow the prompts: You have a choice of registering or searching for others. Concerned family members who know a person’s phone number (home, cell or work) or a complete home address can search for loved ones’ messages. Those without Internet access can call 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) to register yourself and your family.

Read about the Red Cross response to Gustav and Tropical Storm Hanna at the Online Newsroom More information is available at www.redcross.org.

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