The American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region continues to assist residents who were affected by the heavy rains and flash flooding that pummeled parts of the Midwest, including central and southern Illinois, over the past week. A number of communities in Williamson and Franklin counties experienced dangerous flash flooding and residents in some areas were evacuated.
The Red Cross provided emergency shelter for the evacuated residents until it was safe for them to return to their homes. As the cleanup efforts continue, the Red Cross is providing clean-up kits, with items such as garbage bags, work gloves, mops and bleach. Red Cross volunteers are meeting with those affected to help identify available resources and provide casework and recovery services. If you need help, or know someone who needs help, please contact the Red Cross at 844-319-6560.
“People can underestimate the danger of flash flooding, leaving them unprepared for what can happen,” said Alyssa Pollock, Disaster Services Officer for the American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region. “It’s important to update your emergency kit and review your evacuation plan in case you need to leave your home.”
Pollock encourages everyone to download the free Red Cross Emergency App. The App lets you monitor more than 35 different severe weather and emergency alerts and gives you instant access to important preparedness information.
As river levels continue to rise in some areas, the Red Cross is monitoring conditions and has volunteers and shelter locations on standby.
HOW YOU CAN PREPARE
· Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice. When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground and stay there.
· Stay away from floodwaters.
· If you come upon a flooded road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
· Keep children out of the water.
· Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood danger.
People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do in case of tornadoes, flooding and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and a Family Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.
The Red Cross depends on the generous support of the American public to fulfill its crucial mission. Help people affected by disasters like floods, wildfires and countless other crises by making a donation to support Red Cross Disaster Relief. These gifts enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Make a donation today by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 gift.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.