To the editor:
In just this past week, the American Red Cross has responded to four house fires here in our community, responding to emergency needs by providing food, shelter, clothing and support for 19 of our neighbors. This is in addition to the local volunteers who were deployed to the Gulf Coast in response to Hurricane Isaac. Around the clock, 365 days a year, the American Red Cross volunteers right here in the North Country Chapter respond to emergencies and disasters across the country and down the street.
September is National Preparedness Month, and the American Red Cross is encouraging all households to create a family disaster plan to make sure they are ready for the next emergency or disaster. We should strive to make our communities stronger, better prepared and more resilient so we are ready and know what to do during times of disasters.
It has been one year since our area was devastated by torrential rains and massive flooding from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee; we realize now more than ever how important it is to be prepared. When disasters occur, sometimes a few minutes can be the difference between life and death; being prepared is vital.
Red Cross tools make it easier for people to make or update plans. The American Red Cross Hurricane App for iPhone or Android smart phones helps people create a plan and share it with household members and over social networks. In addition, a template to build a plan is available on www.redcross.org.
Everyone must be prepared to take care of themselves and their neighbors in an emergency. No one can predict where or when disasters will strike, but preparedness steps taken today can save lives tomorrow.
With warm regards,
Lynn. M. Gilbert
Carol W. Latinville
North Country Chapter of the American Red Cross