Hurricane Gustav

Hurricane Gustav is making headlines and the American Red Cross is getting ready. Chapters across the Southeast are preparing to receive evacuees.

Over the next two days the Red Cross will move 200 mobile feeding trucks, 99 shelter support trailers (loaded with 100,000 cots, 200,000 blankets, and tens of thousands of comfort kits), and will deploy approximately 3,500 people to support operations in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

This week the Oregon Trail Chapter DSHR Team has been busy assessing availability of our DSHR members. 32 Red Crossers from across the State of Oregon have been assigned to and will travel either today or tomorrow. The organization has a narrow window to preposition supplies for Gustav.

Joe Becker, SVP for Disaster Services, directed chapters across the country to prepare to implement their Disaster Fund Raising Action Plan (DRFAP) and to be prepared to deploy additional DSHR members to support relief efforts post land of Gustav through the holiday weekend.

Out in the Atlantic, Hannah is brewing and currently tracking towards the Atlantic states, many of whom could have evacuees from the Gulf Coast. If both storms make landfall, this would significantly increase the demand for additional DSHR deployments to backfill for already taxed chapters.

In order to meet this request, the Oregon Trail DSHR team has developed a coverage strategy to ensure that responders from OTC can be rapidly deployed to meet what could be significant demand for resources. The team has identified additional resources to be activated to support large scale deployments.

If either or both of these hurricanes reach their full potential, this could generate significant interest from our community and we need to be ready to harness that energy and excitement. Early next week, we will review our spontaneous volunteer plan and prepare to receive, process, train and potentially deploy people.