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American Red Cross Prepares for Tropical Storm Fay in Florida
Date:8/17/2008

Red Cross Safe and Well Website Can Provide Peace of Mind to Loved Ones

WASHINGTON, Aug. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Florida residents listening to Tropical Storm Fay advisories on local and national news are also being informed of American Red Cross activities in their areas. The Red Cross is urging people to register themselves and their loved ones on the Safe and Well website, to let family and friends around the country know of their status. The website can be updated following evacuation or following the storm.

Red Cross workers are also moving both people and supplies into positions throughout Florida, including thousands of ready-to-eat meals and cots and dozens of Emergency Response Vehicles (ERVs). Prior to Tropical Storm Fay making landfall, the Red Cross is preparing its own shelters and supporting other shelters that will be available for people needing to evacuate. Strategically placed warehouses and chapters allow the Red Cross to set up quickly in order to provide for the needs of those affected by storms and hurricanes.

The Safe and Well website is easy to use:

-- Visit Redcross.org, and click on the Safe and Well link

-- Click on "List Myself as Safe and Well," enter your pre-disaster address and phone number, and select any of the standard message options.

-- If you are concerned about a loved one, click "Search" and enter the person's name and pre-disaster phone number OR address. If they have registered, you will be able to view the messages that they posted.

-- If you don't have internet access, you can call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to register yourself and your family. Follow the prompts for disaster information.

Please note that the Safe and Well site safeguards the privacy of the disaster victim. Although these messages will be viewable by friends or family members who conduct a successful search, the site does not reveal a specific location or contact information.

Information being provided by the Red Cross to Florida residents includes the following tips on preparing for hurricanes and evacuations.

Know What to Do When a Hurricane WATCH Is Issued:

-- Listen to NOAA Weather Radio or local radio or TV stations for up-to-date storm information.

-- Prepare to bring inside any lawn furniture, outdoor decorations or ornaments, trash cans, hanging plants and anything else that can be picked up by the wind.

-- Prepare to cover all windows of your home. If shutters have not been installed, use precut plywood as described above. Note: Tape does not prevent windows from breaking, so taping windows is not recommended.

-- Fill your car's gas tank.

-- Recheck manufactured home tie-downs.

-- Check batteries and stock up on canned food, first aid supplies, drinking water and medications.

Prepare a Personal Evacuation Plan:

-- Identify ahead of time where you could go if you are told to evacuate.

Choose several places -- a friend's home in another town, a motel or a

shelter.

-- Keep the telephone numbers handy of these places as well as a road map

of your locality. You may need to take alternative or unfamiliar routes

if major roads are closed or clogged.

-- Listen to NOAA Weather Radio or local radio or TV stations for

evacuation instructions. If advised to evacuate, do so immediately.

-- Take these items with you when evacuating:

-- Prescription medications and medical supplies

-- Bedding and clothing, including sleeping bags and pillows

-- Bottled water, battery-operated radio and extra batteries, first

aid kit, flashlight

-- Car keys and maps

-- Documents; including driver's license, Social Security card, proof

of residence, insurance policies, wills, deeds, birth and marriage

certificates, tax records, etc.

All American Red Cross disaster assistance is free, made possible by voluntary donations of time and money from the American people. You can help the victims of thousands of disasters across the country each year, disasters like Tropical Storm Fay, by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling and other assistance to victims of disaster. The American Red Cross honors donor intent. If you wish to designate your donation to a specific disaster please do so at the time of your donation. Call 1-800-REDCROSS or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish). Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund may be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P. O. Box 37243, Washington, DC20013. Internet users can make a secure online contribution by visiting http://www.redcross.org


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SOURCE American Red Cross
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All rights reserved

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