— The American Red Cross Central and Southern Region is helping 41 people including 18 children who were affected by home fires that took place across the region this past weekend. Red Cross volunteers responded to fires in Benton, Bloomington, Eureka, Herrick, Monmouth, Springfield, Urbana and Washington. The Red Cross has responded to over 560 fires in the Central and Southern Illinois Region this fiscal year.
After a disaster, the Red Cross works with individuals and families to make sure they have safe shelter, food, emergency relief supplies, emotional support and healthcare.
In addition to assisting residents affected by the home fires, Red Cross volunteers provided canteen services of bottled water and snacks for responders at fires in Effingham, Monmouth, Saybrook and Strasburg. Overall, canteen services were provided for more than 150 responders.
HOME FIRE CAMPAIGN
Seven times a day someone in this country dies in a fire. The Red Cross has been working to reduce that number through its Home Fire Campaign, a multi-year effort to reduce the number of home fire deaths and injuries by 25 percent. Launched in October of 2014, the Red Cross and thousands of campaign partners have helped save numerous lives through the effort, as well as installing more than a half million smoke alarms in homes all across the country. The Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region has installed more than 8,600 free smoke alarms.
SIMPLE STEPS TO SAVE LIVES
The Red Cross is calling on everyone to take two simple steps that can save lives: create and practice their home fire escape plan and check their smoke alarms. Other safety steps include:
RED CROSS APPS
- If someone doesn’t have smoke alarms, install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Local building codes vary and there may be additional requirements where someone lives.
- If someone does have alarms, test them today. If they don’t work, replace them.
- Make sure that everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.
- Practice that plan. What’s the household’s escape time?
People can download the all-inclusive Red Cross Emergency app, which combines more than 35 emergency alerts to help keep the user safe. The Red Cross offers a free app – Monster Guard – designed for kids, teaching them to prepare for emergencies at home by playing an engaging game. Users can find the apps in smartphone app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps
WHAT PEOPLE CAN DO
People can visit redcross.org/homefires
to find out more about how to protect themselves and their loved homes from fire. They can become a Red Cross volunteer at redcross.org/CSIL
. They can also help by donating to Red Cross Disaster Relief by visiting redcross.org
, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations to Disaster Relief will be used to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. We respond to nearly 66,000 other disasters every year and most of these are home fires.
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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter @RedCross.