Red Cross at the State Fair

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It’s that time of year again in the Capital Region, STATE FAIR TIME! This year the American Red Cross Capital Region has teamed up with long-time partner in emergency preparedness, PG&E, at a couple of booths right in the middle of all the fair action.

For several years, the Capital Region has been partnering with PG&E. This partnership has resulted in programs that support vulnerable neighborhoods in the central and northern California regions.  Some of these programs include the American Red Cross Ready Neighborhoods program and Team Fire Stoppers.  Both programs aid communities in becoming better prepared for disaster. Preparedness starts at home and the Red Cross strongly suggests every family take the time to build a disaster kit, make an emergency plan, and be informed about the types of disasters that happen locally, and urges every member of the community get involved.

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The booths at the state fair offer an opportunity for the Red Cross and PG&E to continue to reach out to the community. Volunteers will be passing out information, spinning the wheel and asking questions about emergency preparedness and giving away prizes everyday at the fair from open to close until July 27th. Take a minute between riding the rides, eating the deep fried Oreos and viewing the exhibits to go check out the Red Cross and PG&E booths and learn more about how you can be better prepared for an emergency!

 

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American Red Cross Sends Local Volunteers to Aid Eastern Washington Wildfire Response

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Aerial photo of Washington wildfires (KOMO News, Seattle).

~Capital Region deploys 16 volunteers to Washington for wildfire relief~

The Carlton Complex fires in eastern Washington has so far burned more than 280,000 acres and destroyed more than 150 homes. Red Cross disaster relief efforts are underway as volunteers from around the country are responding to provide shelter for evacuated residents and emergency relief for all those affected.

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Volunteer Pat Day of Northeastern California is Washington-bound!

The Red Cross Capital Region has thus far deployed 16 volunteers to serve in various service capacities – delivering mass care and shelter services, coordinating logistics, and providing casework for residents who have lost their homes, and more.

“We are saddened to see the devastation of these wildfires in eastern Washington, but we are also proud to provide support to the relief efforts in the form of our highly trained volunteers,” said Kathleen Weis, Chief Executive Officer for the Red Cross Capital Region. “Wildfires like this are a stark reminder of our own risks here in California and the need to be prepared for such disasters.”

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Volunteers Frank Remick and Howard Evans heading up to Washington!

California is certainly no stranger to wildfires. The ongoing drought in the state has resulted in fire risks and fire activity to increase sharply throughout the year. It is important that we all take steps to recognize the risks and be proactive in our approach to be prepared for such disasters.

The Red Cross offers a number of tips and resources to help prepare you, your family, and your home in the event of a wildfire.

PREPARE

  • Post emergency phone numbers by every phone in your home.
  • Clear and maintain “Defensible Space” around your home, free of dry vegetation and flammable materials.
  • Make sure driveway entrances and your house number or address are clearly marked.
  • Select building materials and plants that resist fire.
  • Regularly clean roofs and gutters.
  • Build an emergency kit with enough food, water, clothing, copies of important documents, and supplies to sustain every member of your household (including pets) for at least 72 hours.
  • Establish an emergency action plan for you and your family
    • Plan and practice two ways out of your neighborhood in case your primary route is blocked.
    • Select a place for family members to meet outside your neighborhood in case you cannot get home or need to evacuate.
    • Identify someone who is out of the area to contact if local phone lines are not working.

DURING A WILDFIRE

  • Be ready to leave at a moment’s notice. If told to evacuate, evacuate. Don’t wait.
  • Listen to local radio and television stations for updated emergency information.
  • Always back your car into the garage or park it in an open space facing the direction of escape.
  • Confine pets to one room so that you can find them if you need to evacuate quickly.
  • Listen and watch for air quality reports and health warnings about smoke.
  • Limit exposure to smoke and dust
  • If you have asthma or another lung disease, follow your health care provider’s advice and seek medical care if your symptoms worsen.

More information on wildfire safety is available on the preparedness section of www.redcross.org.

Additionally, you can download FREE Red Cross mobile apps to help you be prepared for emergencies:

WILDFIRE APP You can also download the free Red Cross Wildfire App for preloaded content that lets users know what they should do before, during and after a wildfire.

FIRST AID APP Folks should also download the Red Cross First Aid app to have information on hand about how to handle the most common first aid emergencies.

Both apps are available for iPhone and Android devices.

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Wildfire Season in the Capital Region – Bully Fire

Written by Red Cross Volunteer, Caroline Nilsson

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Volunteers Racheal Jostock, Jill Davidson and Rose Nobili unloading supplies at the Bully Fire shelter. Photo by Caroline Nilsson

~UPDATE: As of July 17, 7:00am, evacuations had been lifted and Bully Fire shelter is now closed~

After three consecutive years of California drought, fires start easily.  The Bully Fire in Shasta County has burned more than 10,000 acres so far, forcing the residents of the Trinity Alps Preserve to flee their homes.  The American Red Cross is here, offering shelter and comfort to those who have been evacuated. Continue reading

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Red Cross Urges Safety and Preparedness as Busy, Drought-Fueled Wildfire Season Continues

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Bully Fire (Shasta County). AP Photo/The Record Searchlight, Greg Barnette

As California continues to endure an historic drought, summer heat and exceptionally dry conditions have given way to numerous wildfires throughout the state. In the Capital Region, firefighters continue to battle the Bully Fire in Shasta County, which has burned more than 8,700 acres.

Red Cross volunteers are currently operating an evacuation shelter at the Igo-Oso Elementary School in the town of Igo, where we are providing shelter, food, and emergency resources for evacuated residents.

The Bully Fire is the latest incident to impact our state and region, highlighting just how vulnerable our communities are to the dangers of wildfires. Continue reading

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Red Cross Issues Top Ten Ways to Be Safe When Swimming Over 4th of July Holiday

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The long Fourth of July weekend is here and many people will spend part of their holiday at a backyard or community pool. The American Red Cross is issuing ten steps people should take to be safe while poolside.

A recent Red Cross survey found that eight out of ten Americans are planning water activities such as going to the beach, pool, water park, or boating or fishing this summer. A third (32 percent) of all Americans plan to swim at a place without a lifeguard. The Red Cross has launched an anti-drowning campaign this summer that promotes swim lessons and safe swimming. Continue reading

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Red Cross Issues Top 4th of July Safety Steps for Travel, Grilling and Fireworks

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This Fourth of July weekend, many people will be traveling, firing up the backyard grill or enjoying fireworks, and the American Red Cross offers a series of steps everyone can follow to safely enjoy the holiday weekend. Continue reading

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Remembering our Veterans

Written by Debbie Calcote, Red Cross Disaster Program Manager, Stanislaus/Tuolumne Counties
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For the past 7 years, volunteers and I have attended the San Joaquin National Cemetery Memorial in Santa Nella.
 
Today marked the 7th year of this tradition. I know it doesn’t seem like much to some, but this morning I was watching all the volunteers and I remembered when this venture first began. I was a volunteer at the time. I would work for weeks planning and gathering supplies for us to provide refreshments for those in attendance. We didn’t have as many resources then, so it was often a struggle to get supplies. But we were all happy to go out and ask for such a great event.

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