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Aug-28-2008 11:25printcomments

Oregonians Deploy for Tropical Storm Gustav

The death toll from Gustav is already up to 23 in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
Tropical Storm Gustav as it moves into the U.S., Thursday August 28, 2008. Map courtesy: NOAA

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Though Tropical Storm Gustav isn't projected to make landfall along the Gulf Coast until the end of Labor Day weekend, the American Red Cross is preparing for the anticipated hurricane by deploying volunteers and staging supplies in key communities. Six volunteers from the Oregon Trail Chapter of the American Red Cross will leave for Baton Rouge, LA today to assist with setting up shelters for residents as needed.
They are:
* Erin Wright, Hillsboro
* Kurt Klutschkowski, Portland
* Lynda Holm, Rockaway Beach
* Mike Redlin, Wood Village
* Mary Lou Hadwick, Portland
* Margie Thom, Estacada

Cities along the Gulf Coast are not taking the threat of Gustav lightly. In New Orleans, National Guard troops are standing by and officials have begun preliminary planning to evacuate and lock down the city.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has already declared a state of emergency on forecaster's speculations that it could become a major hurricane. Currently, the death toll from Gustav is up to 23 in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

BE PREPARED! Here Are Some Tips For Families to Follow During a Hurricane Watch or Warning:

During a hurricane WATCH:

* Listen for weather updates and hurricane progress reports via crank or battery-operated radio or television. Be prepared to evacuate if local officials advise it.
* Get a crank or battery-operated radio, flashlight and extra batteries.
* Ensure your disaster supplies kit has the items you need, including a three-day supply of food and water (one gallon per person per day), first aid kit, medications, copies of important documents, cash and clothing.
* Fill vehicles with fuel.
* Bring in lawn furniture, bicycles, toys, hanging plants, trash cans, garden tools and anything else that can be picked up by the wind.
* Secure your home by closing all windows and doors and then hurricane shutters. If you don’t have shutters, board up windows and doors with plywood.
* Remove outside antennas if possible and if it can be done safely.
* Turn refrigerators and freezers to coldest setting. Open only when absolutely necessary and close quickly. This will allow perishable food to last longer during a power outage.
* Store valuables and personal papers in a waterproof container on the highest level of your home. Hurricanes can cause water damage inside homes.
* If you have a manufactured or mobile home, check tie-downs. They may be less affected by high winds if they are tied down according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

During a hurricane WARNING:

* Keep the radio or television on and listen for updates as the hurricane can change direction, speed and intensity quickly.
* If you are advised to leave your home, do so immediately and take your pets with you.
* If you are advised to remain at home, stay inside, away from windows, skylights and glass doors. Stay in an interior room without windows and with as many walls between you and the outside winds as possible.
* Secure external doors and close all interior doors. Closed doors will help prevent damaging winds from entering rooms.
* Fill bathtubs and sinks with water to use later to flush toilets and wash up.
* If power is lost, turn off appliances to reduce power surge when electricity is restored. Do NOT use open flames, such as candles and kerosene lamps, as a source of light.

The Red Cross is a charitable organization, not a government agency, and depends on volunteers like these people along with the generosity of the American public to perform its humanitarian missions.

Source: Oregon Trail Chapter of the American Red Cross

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rjerryc August 31, 2008 4:21 pm (Pacific time)

Hurricanes devour these same low lying areas nearly every year. When Katrina ripped the city of New Orleans apart and left nearly nothing, people went back and built again. There is no way that they did not know the dangers of rebuilding there. They should have moved the whole city to a new, safer location. The foolish man builds his house upon the sand and the wise man builds his house on the rock. Then again, the strange folks that live in tornado alley keep rolling in new manufactured homes. Some areas this is an annual ritual.

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