|Red Cross prepares for impacts from Hurricane Lee
Red Cross urges all in Lee’s potential path to monitor weather and prepare now
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BANGOR, Maine, September 14, 2023 — Hurricane Lee is threatening parts of New England, particularly Maine’s coastline, with impacts expected later this week. Maine is likely to see the worst of the storm’s effects with strong winds, heavy rain, dangerous rip currents and waves that could be more than 30 feet high.The American Red Cross is preparing to respond and urges everyone in Lee’s potential path to monitor their local weather and prepare for this storm now. It’s important to understand the difference between a watch and a warning. A watch means conditions are likely and to stay alert — a warning means act now. The Red Cross encourages Mainers to listen to the advice of local authorities and evacuate immediately if asked to do so. Tune into your local radio, NOAA radio or news channel for the latest updates.Currently, the Red Cross is pre-positioning disaster teams and supplies throughout the area to be ready to support communities who may be impacted by the storm. We are deploying enough workers and supplies to be able to help thousands of people. This includes as many as 25 shelter teams and 40 Red Cross emergency vehicles standing ready to support a large relief response.The Red Cross is coordinating closely with government officials and community partners to ensure plans are in place to provide help for families in harm’s way. Additional volunteers and emergency supplies are on standby in case they are needed. The Red Cross has also pre-positioned blood products in the region in advance of the storm and stands ready to provide additional blood products if hospitals need support. Due to the storm’s monstrous size, areas far away from the storm’s center could see Lee’s effects. Even if the storm weakens, the National Hurricane Center warns that will not diminish the storm’s potential for devastating impacts. Because of ongoing heavy rain, the ground is already saturated in many of the areas where Lee is expected to hit, increasing the risk of flooding.
Follow these steps to help make sure your family is ready to either evacuate or hunker down if a storm threatens your community.
Create an evacuation plan. Plan what to do in case you are separated from your family during an emergency and if you have to evacuate. Coordinate your plan with your child’s school, your work and your community’s emergency plans. Plan multiple routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs as required and make plans for pets. If you already have an emergency plan, update it and review with family members so everyone knows what to do if an emergency occurs.
Build an emergency kit with a gallon of water per person, per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight, battery-powered radio, first aid kit, medications, supplies for an infant and pets if applicable, a multi-purpose tool, personal hygiene items, copies of important papers, cell phone chargers, extra cash, blankets, maps of the area and emergency contact information. If you already have a disaster kit, now is the time to make sure the food and water are still okay to consume and that copies of important documents are up to date.
Be informed. Find out how local officials will contact you during a disaster and how you will get important information, such as evacuation orders.
Download the free Red Cross Emergency app for instant access to full weather alerts, help preparing for emergency situations and open Red Cross shelter locations.Standard homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding. It’s important to have protection from the floods associated with hurricanes, tropical storms, heavy rains and other conditions that impact the U.S. For more information on flood insurance, please visit the National Flood Insurance Program website at www.FloodSmart.gov.
In the coming days, emergency shelters are likely to open in some areas. Anyone who needs a safe place to go can find information about open shelters on redcross.org, the free Red Cross Emergency app or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (800-733-2767).
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% 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 CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.# # #
Executive Director, Northern and Eastern Maine
American Red Cross | Northern New England Region | Serving Aroostook, Washington, Hancock, Penobscot, Piscataquis, Somerset and Waldo Counties
900B Hammond Street
Bangor, ME 04401