They released the following statement Saturday:
The American Red Cross is preparing to respond to the effects of Hurricane Sandy and urges all residents in Sandy's path to do the same.
Across the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, the Red Cross is moving disaster workers and emergency response vehicles into areas that weather experts say will be the most affected by the storm. In addition, the Red Cross is working with government officials and community partners to coordinate large-scale response efforts.
Locally, the Red Cross of Western Pennsylvania is also ready to respond to the expected remnants of Hurricane Sandy. Currently, the Red Cross is calling upon local disaster volunteers to assist in the region as well as deploy to other areas in need of assistance. The local Red Cross is identifying potential shelter locations, organizing relief supplies and stocking emergency response vehicles.
The local organization is also calling upon community members to do their part in preparing for Hurricane Sandy.
MAKE A KIT. Check emergency kits, which should contain a three-day supply of water for each person in the household, along with nonperishable food, flashlights, a battery-operated radio and first aid kit. A full list of emergency supplies for a kit can be found at RedCross.org
HAVE A PLAN. Finalize and practice individual family plans for possible community evacuations. In addition, residents should become familiar with their community's hurricane response plan. Red Cross videos are available to help get prepared, including information on severe weather preparedness and how to get ready for winter weather.
STAY INFORMED. Identify how local authorities will notify community members during a disaster and how they relay their messages, whether through local radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio stations or channels. Stay updated with weather reports and understand the difference between weather alerts such as watches and warnings. Share this information with others.
DOWNLOAD RED CROSS APPS. The free Red Cross Hurricane App for mobile devices provides real-time hurricane safety information such as weather alerts and where Red Cross shelters are located. The app also features a toolkit with a flashlight, strobe light and alarm, and the one-touch "I'm Safe" button lets someone use social media outlets to tell family and friends they are okay. The Hurricane App is available in Spanish. Users just need to make sure the language setting on their smart phone is set to Spanish before downloading. The First Aid app puts expert advice for everyday emergencies in someone's hand. The apps can be found in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross.
HOW TO HELP To help people affected by disasters like hurricanes, as well as countless crises at home and around the world, make a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. Visit RedCross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Contributions may also be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.