FAQ: Valley and Butte Wildfire Recovery

faq-post-pictureAs families re-enter their neighborhoods, many are asking how to stay safe, where to go, and what the next steps are as they map out their road to recovery.

We have gathered some resources to help answer a few of the most commonly asked questions the Red Cross is receiving from those affected by the California Wildfires. The following information has been developed with guidance from CalFire, California Environmental Protection Agency, California Department of Public Health, Calaveras County,  and Lake County, California.

Please note that all Red Cross services are free.

Q: How do I know when it’s safe to return to my property?

A: Do not re-enter your property until fire officials say it’s safe to do so. Check the CalFire website for most recent updates. Keep your skin covered by wearing long pants, sleeves, gloves and masks while sifting through debris to keep ash and any toxic chemicals away. Use caution when entering burned areas as hazards may still exist, including hot spots which can flare up without warning.

Q: Is the water safe to drink?

A: Consult your local drinking water provider or check with your county officials to ensure the water is safe to drink. Wash any home-grown fruit or vegetables from trees or gardens before eating.

Q: Can I eat the food that was kept in my refrigerator?

A: If you were evacuated and/or without power, dispose of any food left in your refrigerator. Make sure to sterilize the interior and exterior of your refrigerator and freezer thoroughly before storing food when electricity has been restored to avoid contamination.

Q:  Where do I dispose of garbage if there are no trash facilities in my area?

A: Do NOT dispose of ash or fire debris in dumpsters or garbage bins, as it may contain hazardous waste. Cleaning products, paint, batteries and damaged fuel containers need to be disposed of properly to avoid risk.  Shop vacuums and other non-HEPA filter vacuums are not recommended to clean up ash. HEPA filter vacuums could be used, if available.  Calaveras County has a debris cleanup effort in place. Lake County is developing a debris plan; please continue to check http://www.co.lake.ca.us.

Q: How do I protect myself when cleaning up ash?

A: Wear a mask, gloves, long sleeved shirts and long pants to avoid ash contact with skin, as it may cause irritation. If you get ash on your skin, wash it off as soon as possible. Some wet ash can cause chemical burns. Do not use leaf blowers as they will cause ash to disperse in the air.

Q: Is it safe to allow my kids and pets near ash?

A: Keep children and pets away from ash and do not allow them to play near ash pits.  Wash toys thoroughly before children play with them. Hidden embers and hot spots could burn your pets’ paws or hooves.

Q: How do I stay healthy during the recovery and clean up process?

A: Cleaning, sorting and sifting through debris can be strenuous and emotionally taxing. If you experience chest tightness or pain, shortness of breath, or dizziness, seek medical care immediately. Some ash may cause chemical burns when it becomes wet on the skin. Make sure to pay close attention to children and the health and emotional impacts your family may be feeling.

Q: Where can I find additional resources on getting disaster recovery assistance?

A:  You can register with the Red Cross for immediate relief needs. To do so, please talk directly with a Red Cross caseworker at a local assistance center, chapter location or call 855-224-2490. Please note that signing in at a Red Cross shelter does not qualify as officially registering for disaster relief assistance.

Those who registered with the American Red Cross for wildfire assistance need to also register separately with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) at 800-621-3362. Registering with FEMA is required to be considered for federal assistance, even if you have registered with another disaster relief organization such as the American Red Cross, the state, local officials or churches.  The Red Cross and FEMA are separate entities that treat client information as confidential.

Advertisements

Disaster Operations Report – Week of August 24, 2015

Gold Country Region – Local Incident Details

This Week
17 Incidents
131 Clients

This Year
125 Incidents
1155 Clients

Mon, Aug 24 – Sacramento, CA (Sacramento – 16-155)
Incident: Fire Impact: 3 Units, 5 Adults, 4 Children
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing and Food

Mon, Aug 24 – Sacramento, CA (Sacramento – 16-157)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 2 Adults, 4 Children
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Tue, Aug 25 – Weaverville, CA (Trinity – 16-158)
Incident: Fire Impact: 5 Adults
Responders: 1 Services Provided: Client Snacks and Canteened Clients

Wed, Aug 26 – Redding, CA (Shasta – 16-161)
Incident: Fire Impact: 3 Units, 10 Adults, 5 Children
Responders: 4 Services Provided: Housing, Food, Clothing, and Medication

Wed, Aug 26 – Chico, CA (Butte – 16-164)
Incident: Fire Impact: 3 Units, 4 Adults
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, Clothing, and Medication

Wed, Aug 26 – Stockton, CA (San Joaquin – 16-165)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 2 Adults
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Wed, Aug 26 – Sacramento, CA (Sacramento – 16-166)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 1 Adult
Responders: 3 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Wed, Aug 26 – Modesto, CA (Stanislaus – 16-167)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 3 Adults
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing and Food

Thu, Aug 27 – Mi-Wuk Village, CA (Tuolumne – 16-168)
Incident: Fire Impact: 3 Units, 4 Adults, 4 Children
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, Clothing, Medication, and Mental Health

Thu, Aug 27 – Mi-Wuk Village, CA (Tuolumne – 16-169)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 1 Adult, 1 Child
Responders: 1 Services Provided: Food, Clothing, and Translation

Thu, Aug 27 – Oroville, CA (Butte – 16-170)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 2 Adults
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing and Food

Thu, Aug 27 – Sacramento, CA (Sacramento – 16-171)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 3 Adults, 1 Child
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Thu, Aug 27 – Live Oak, CA (Sutter – 16-172)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 5 Adults, 2 Children
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Fri, Aug 28 – Stockton, CA (San Joaquin – 16-174)
Incident: Fire Impact: 2 Units, 5 Adults, 1 Child
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Fri, Aug 28 – Turlock, CA (Stanislaus – 16-175)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 45 Adults, 45 First responders
Responders: 4 Services Provided: Food and Canteened Responders

Fri, Aug 28 – Portola, CA (Plumas – 16-176)
Incident: Fire Impact: 2 Units, 4 Adults, 3 Children
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Food and Clothing

Sun, Aug 30 – Sacramento, CA (Sacramento – 16-181)
Incident: Fire Impact: 1 Unit, 2 Adults, 3 Children
Responders: 2 Services Provided: Housing, Food, and Clothing

Incident Statistics
Responders
Responders Active: 29
Responder Travel: 960 miles

Resources For Clients
Comfort Kits: 37
Toys: 10
Blankets: 9

Deployments
There are no deployments on record at this time.

Three Months Later: Red Cross Recovery Efforts Ongoing in Nepal

RC in Nepal

 

Three months have passed since the devastating earthquake rocked Nepal and its aftershocks shook surrounding locations. The Red Cross is still there providing relief and helping to rebuild.

On April 25, 2015 Nepal was severely impacted by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake, which took the lives of many and left others homeless and in a state of helplessness.

ifrc-nepal-earthquake-infographic
Click the Infographic to enlarge

5.6 million people were affected, and of that number 17,932 people were injured and 8,856 people were killed. On top of the loss of lives 543,034 houses were destroyed.

To date nearly 8,000 Red Cross volunteers and staff have been deployed, and more than $13.6 million have been spent or committed to emergency relief and shelter and cash distribution.

With generous support and donations we have provided health services including medical care, first aid and psychosocial support; we’ve distributed more than 2.8 million liters of safe water, and more than 7,000 relief kits and hygiene kits have been distributed to Nepal survivors.

 This natural disaster was one of the largest to strike Nepal since 1934, and we will continue to do all that we can to assist with the restoration and rebuild of Nepal. Our primary areas of focus are food, water, shelter, health care and cash grants.

We are confident that we can extend our hand to aid in relief efforts.

Read some of the stories of the people impacted by this disaster: http://rdcrss.org/1E3Hjiy

 

A Full Circle Moment

Thanks to Fox40 for sharing the work that we do at the American Red Cross and thanks to the Girl Scouts for putting extra love in making the kits.

We would like to share this special ‘full circle moment” that showcases how our work is impacting people every day.

Email from Jennifer Loncaric
Subject: What we do works. 

“I thought you might like this. That’s a note my daughter wrote when she helped make comfort kits with Jasmine a few months ago. The girl holding it was also there helping that day. She is Trina’s (my co-leader) step-daughter. Their house was burnt early Sunday morning after a mortar hit the front porch. We don’t know how long they will be displaced, but the Red Cross visited them today with some help. It’s a beautiful thing to see the joy on her face from something so small in such a tragic time for her family. I am overwhelmed with emotion knowing my girls have had such a local and personal impact.”

Thanks to the kind efforts of local girl scout troops, many families struck by home fires have received useful Red Cross Comfort Kits during such a stressful time in their lives. Jasmine Su an HSS instructor and Girl Scout troop leader helped to create these kits through the help of her troops. Here is a picture of one of her troop members holding a very heartfelt message which was addressed to the family that suffered from the tragedy.

We take much pleasure in sharing this moment to demonstrate the positive support of these young ladies during times of stress.