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Shelter Closed: Red Cross to Assess Damage

September 15, 2016, 9:23 AM HST
* Updated September 15, 9:25 AM
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redcrossThe American Red Cross closed the emergency shelter at Pa‘auilo Gym today, Thursday, Sept. 15. It had opened on Wednesday evening for residents evacuated from their homes due to flooding.

Red Cross volunteers on both the Big Island will be canvassing the hardest hit areas today to assess damage (weather permitting).

Red Cross Flood Recovery Tips

  • Return home only when officials have declared the area safe.
  • Before entering your home, look outside for loose power lines, damaged gas lines, foundation cracks or other damage.
  • Parts of your home may be collapsed or damaged. Approach entrances carefully. See if porch roofs and overhangs have all their supports.
  • If you smell natural or propane gas or hear a hissing noise, leave immediately and call the fire department.
  • If power lines are down outside your home, do not step in puddles or standing water.
  • Keep children and pets away from hazardous sites and floodwater.
  • Materials such as cleaning products, paint, batteries, contaminated fuel and damaged fuel containers are hazardous. Check with local authorities for assistance with disposal to avoid risk.
  • During cleanup, wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and rubber boots.
  • Make sure your food and water are safe. Discard items that have come in contact with floodwater, including canned goods, water bottles, plastic utensils and baby bottle nipples. When in doubt, throw it out!
  • Contact your local or state public health department to see if your water supply might be contaminated. You may need to boil or treat it before use. Do not use water that could be contaminated to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, wash hands, make ice or make baby formula!

The Red Cross urges residents to download the free all-in-one Red Cross Mobile App that includes over 35 different severe weather and emergency alerts, maps to find the nearest open shelter, step-by-step instructions on what to do before, during, and after a disaster strikes, and lifesaving first aid instructions, diagrams, and videos on what to do for 20 emergencies like heart attack, stroke, bleeding, choking, head injuries, burns, broken bones, asthma attack, diabetic emergency, heat stroke, seizure, poisoning, bee stings, allergies, and unconsciousness.

There is even a one touch “I’m safe” button that allows you to broadcast reassurance to family and friends via social media outlets that you are out of harm’s way.

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For more information, visit redcross.org/hawaii or call (808) 739-8109.

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