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The Salvation Army to deploy teams from Florida to Carolinas ahead of Florence

LUTZ, FL (September 10, 2018) – Having strengthened from a tropical storm over the weekend, Hurricane Florence is expected to increase in significance as it approaches the southeastern United States. As the threat to Florida’s coast has lessened, The Salvation Army will deploy mobile feeding units, staff, and volunteers from across Florida to assist areas where the storm is expected to make landfall in North and South Carolina.

Teams from Clearwater, Cocoa, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Melbourne, Miami, Orlando, St. Petersburg, Stuart, Tallahassee, and Vero Beach are preparing now to be in place mid-week in anticipation of serving impacted areas after the storm.

“The units being deployed each have the capacity to serve 500 – 1,500 meals per day,” says Steven Hartsook. Salvation Army Director of Emergency Disaster Services.

“The Salvation Army prepares all year to be able to serve where needed. Individual and family preparedness is crucial in advance of a disaster, and we want to remind everyone that the time to prepare for the next storm is now,” says Hartsook.

The Salvation Army will also deploy a 53’ refrigerated feeding support trailer from Florida to North Carolina to assist with transporting food and drinks to affected areas.

To support The Salvation Army’s Hurricane Florence relief efforts, visit www.HelpSalvationArmy.org. For updates on The Salvation Army’s emergency disaster response efforts, visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org.

Texas Salvation Army Ready and Prepared to Respond to Tropical Storm Harvey

Dallas, Texas (August 23, 2017) – As Tropical Storm Harvey redevelops and threatens the Texas coast, The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services teams across the state are on standby and prepared to respond as needed. Mobile kitchens are stocked and ready and clean up kits and water have already been dispatched to key areas for distribution.

The Salvation Army staff are working closely with the both state and city emergency agencies in anticipation of a widespread relief effort along the coastline potentially from extreme South Texas through Lake Jackson. Rainfall totals of 10-15″ with isolated amounts of 20″ are possible in the area.

“The Salvation Army has more than 115 years of experience in disaster relief efforts since officers were first called to respond to the Galveston Hurricane of 1900. It is because of this tradition of service and our mission to meet human need that The Salvation Army stands ready to help,” said Alvin Migues, Emergency Disaster Services Director for the Texas Division. “We will continue to closely monitor the developing situation as Tropical Storm Harvey makes landfall and moves through the region in the coming days. Salvation Army officers, staff and volunteers will be ready to respond.”

For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmy.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar spent is used to carry out those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.

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Source: disaster.salvationarmyusa.org 

With Tropical Depression Harvey Reforming in Gulf of Mexico, ALM Canteens on Standby

JACKSON, MS  – With Tropical Depression Harvey moving back into the open waters of the Gulf of Mexico, The Salvation Army of Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi(ALM) is preparing for the severe weather Harvey might bring to the Gulf Coast. Emergency Disaster Services Director for The Salvation Army ALM, Terry Lightheart says there is a strong likelihood Harvey could grow stronger as it moves through the Gulf.

“We are monitoring the storm closely,” said Lightheart. “We have all our canteens or mobile feeding trucks and personnel on standby to respond if we are needed.”

Lightheart says Harvey is expected to impact the coastlines of Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi within the next two to five days.

“Right now, we believe the biggest threat is from flooding, so we are asking residents to stay alert to their local weather reports,” said Lightheart. “And remember, large amounts of can fall in a short amount of time and flooding can impact communities quickly, especially in low lying areas.”

Lieutenant Richard Watts is Corps Officer at the Lake Charles, Louisiana Salvation Army. At this time, Southwest Louisiana is expected to receive heavy rain from Harvey.

“We have our canteen ready to respond when called upon,” said Lieutenant Watts. “We are staying in touch with local partners so we can work together to provide the best service should our community be affected. We know rain is on the way. What we don’t know is how much.”

The Salvation Army is working with state emergency officials monitoring Tropical Depression Harvey as it moves closer to the coast. The Salvation Army is prepared to provide food, drinks, and emotional and spiritual care to communities affected by the storm in the coming days.

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar spent is used to carry out those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.

EDS Update: Donate Now to Disaster Relief Efforts in Mexico Following Hurricane Patricia

An appeal has been established to help provide disaster relief in the wake of Hurricane Patricia in Mexico. The appeal has been set-up through The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO). To give:

– visit salar.my/HurricanePatricia

– call 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769).

– Check donations to Salvation Army World Service Office (designate “Hurricane Patricia”) can be sent to:International Relief Fund
P.O. Box 418558
Boston, MA 02241-8558

For more information, go to:

http://sawso.org/sawso/news/Salvation_Army_Mobilizing_to_Serve_Communities_in_Aftermath_of_Hurricane_Patricia

monsoon myanmar

Monsoon causes Nationwide Flooding Crisis in Myanmar

monsoon myanmarSince Myanmar’s monsoon season commenced in early June, almost 1 million individuals have been affected by widespread flooding – compounded by Cyclone Komen –  in 12 of the 14 states throughout the nation. Thought to be the worst flooding in years, aproximately one hundred people have died and 1.2 million acres of rice fields have been destroyed.

The Salvation Army is working alongside authorities and nongovernment organizations (NGO) to provide relief to the affected communities in the form of meals, water, and shelter. Infrastructure remains point of concern as roads and bridges have been destroyed, and in some instances, swept away by the flooding. Many Salvation Army buildings and amenities are housing those that have been displaced  from their homes. Long-term relief efforts will revolve around funding and redevelopment of homes, bogs, and wells.

With a one hundred-year presence in Myanmar, The Salvation Army will continue serving these communities long after the catastrophe is over.

The Salvation Army depends upon financial donations to fulfill the distinctive, urgent needs of communities in disaster, such as those within Myanmar. To help worldwide disaster relief efforts of The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO), please go to https://give.salvationarmyusa.org/SAWSO and select “Disaster Relief & Reconstruction”.

About The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO)

SAWSO is committed to working hand-in-hand with local communities to help people who face challenges every day in countries around the globe. Created in 1977 as an independent 501(c) (3) to support the ministry of The Salvation Army, SAWSO has been strengthening global communities in need for nearly 38 years. SAWSO supports the Army’s impressive global footprint in 127 countries, developing long-term community-driven solutions to issues in the areas of:

· Community Health & HIV Prevention
· Livelihood & Empowerment 
· Anti-human Trafficking
· Disaster Relief & Recovery
· Education

To learn more, go to www.SAWSO.org.

The Salvation Army is committed to utilize philanthropic gifts in the manner donors desire. Occasionally, conditions in the field may alter relief activities. If this occurs, The Salvation Army will redirect funds to our International relief efforts in the area.

It’s Hurricane Season… Are you ready?

Information for this article courtesy of the National Weather Service’s National Hurricane Center and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

What is a Hurricane?

A hurricane is a type of tropical cyclone, which is a generic term for a low pressure system that generally forms in the tropics. The cyclone is accompanied by thunderstorms and, in the Northern Hemisphere, a counterclockwise circulation of winds near the earth’s surface.

When are Hurricanes most likely to occur?

Different areas of the world have different times when tropical cyclones are most likely to form. These periods are called Hurricane Seasons:

  • Atlantic and Caribbean: June 1 to November 30 with peak season mid-August to late October.
  • Central Pacific (Hawaii): June 1 to November 30 with peak season from July to September.
  • East Pacific: May 15 to November 30
  • Western North Pacific: Tropical cyclones can strike year round

Different Types of Tropical Cyclones

Tropical cyclones are classified as follows:

  • Tropical Depression. An organized system of clouds and thunderstorms with a defined surface circulation and maximum sustained winds* of 38 mph or less
  • Tropical Storm. An organized system of strong thunderstorms with a defined surface circulation and maximum sustained winds of 39-73 mph (34-63 kt)
  • Hurricane. An intense tropical weather system of strong thunderstorms with a well-defined surface circulation and maximum sustained winds of 74 mph (64 kt) or higher

Hurricanes are also categorized according to the strength of their winds using the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. A Category 1 storm has the lowest wind speeds, while a Category 5 hurricane has the strongest. These are relative terms, because lower category storms can sometimes inflict greater damage than higher category storms, depending on where they strike and the particular hazards they bring. In fact, tropical storms can also produce significant damage and loss of life, mainly due to flooding.

Hurricane Names

When the winds from a tropical cyclone reaches 39 mph (34 kts), the cyclones are given names. Years ago, an international committee developed names for Atlantic cyclones (The History of Naming Hurricanes). In 1979 a six year rotating list of Atlantic storm names was adopted — alternating between male and female hurricane names. Storm names are used to facilitate geographic referencing, for warning services, for legal issues, and to reduce confusion when two or more tropical cyclones occur at the same time. Through a vote of the World Meteorological Organization Region IV Subcommittee, Atlantic cyclone names are retired usually when hurricanes result in substantial damage or death or for other special circumstances.

Hurricane Hazards

Storm Surge/Tide

Storm surge and large waves produced by hurricanes pose the greatest threat to life and property along the coast. Storm Surge is an abnormal rise of water generated by a storm’s winds. Storm surge can reach heights well over 20 feet and can span hundreds of miles of coastline.

In the northern hemisphere, the highest surge values typically occur in the right front quadrant of a hurricane coincident with onshore flow; in the southern hemisphere, the left front quadrant. More intense and larger hurricanes produce higher surge. In addition, shallower offshore waters contribute to higher storm surge inundation. Storm surge is by far the greatest threat to life and property along the immediate coast.

Storm Tide is the water level rise during a storm due to the combination of storm surge and the astronomical tide. For example, if a hurricane moves ashore at a high tide of 2 feet, a 15 foot surge would be added to the high tide, creating a storm tide of 17 feet. The combination of high winds and storm tide topped with battering waves can be deadly and cause tremendous property damage along an area of coastline hundreds of miles wide.

The destructive power of storm surge and large battering waves can result in loss of life, buildings destroyed, beach and dune erosion and road and bridge damage along the coast. Storm surge can travel several miles inland. In estuaries and bayous, salt water intrusion endangers public health and the environment.

Winds

Hurricane-force winds, 74 mph or more, can destroy buildings and mobile homes. Debris, such as signs, roofing material, siding and small items left outside become flying missiles during hurricanes. Winds can stay above hurricane strength well inland. In 2004, Hurricane Charley made landfall at Punta Gorda on the southwest Florida coast and produced major damage well inland across central Florida with gusts of more than 100 mph.

Tropical cyclones can also produce dangerous tornadoes. It is not unusual for tornado watches to be issued as a storm makes landfall and these can continue well after the storm moves inland. Listen for tornado warnings and take cover as directed.

Rainfall

Tropical cyclones often produce widespread, torrential rains in excess of 6 inches, which may result in deadly and destructive floods. In fact, flooding is the major threat from tropical cyclones for people living inland.

Flash flooding, defined as a rapid rise in water levels, can occur quickly due to intense rainfall. Longer term flooding on rivers and streams can persist for several days after the storm.

Rainfall amounts are not directly related to the strength of tropical cyclones but rather to the speed and size of the storm, as well as the geography of the area. Slower moving and larger storms produce more rainfall. In addition, mountainous terrain enhances rainfall from a tropical cyclone.

Rip Currents

Even if a tropical cyclone stays well offshore, it can still be dangerous. The strong winds of a tropical cyclone can cause dangerous waves that pose a significant hazard to mariners and coastal residents and visitors. When the waves break along the coast, they can produce deadly rip currents—even at large distances from the storm.

Rip currents are channeled currents of water flowing away from shore, usually extending past the line of breaking waves that can pull even the strongest swimmers away from shore. In 2008, despite the fact that Hurricane Bertha was more than a 1,000 miles offshore, the storm resulted in rip currents that killed three people along the New Jersey coast and required 1,500 lifeguard rescues in Ocean City, Maryland, over a 1 week period. In 2009, all six deaths in the United States directly attributable to tropical cyclones occurred as the result of drowning from large waves or strong rip currents.

Before a Hurricane

To prepare for a hurricane, you should take the following measures:

  • Determine safe evacuation routes inland.
  • Learn locations of official shelters.
  • Check emergency equipment, such as flashlights, generators and battery-powered equipment such as cell phones and your NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards receiver.
  • Buy food that will keep and store drinking water.
  • Review your insurance policy.
  • Make plans to secure your property. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8” marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
  • Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage.
  • Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed.
  • Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
  • Determine how and where to secure your boat.
  • If you have pets, include them in your preparedness plan. Look for pet-friendly hotels or shelters on your evacuation route.

Build An Emergency Kit

An Emergency Supplies Kit Should include:

  • At least a 3-day supply of water (one gallon per person, per day)
  • At least a 3-day supply of non-perishable food
  • At least, one change of clothing and shoes per person
  • One blanket or sleeping bag per person
  • First-aid kit
  • Battery-powered NWR and a portable radio
  • Flashlight, extra batteries
  • Extra set of car keys
  • Credit card and cash
  • Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members
  • Prescription and non-prescription medicines
  • Pet supplies, including carrier, leash, food, tags and licenses

During a Hurricane

If a hurricane is likely in your area, you should:

  • Listen to the radio or TV for information.
  • Secure your home, close storm shutters, and secure outdoor objects or bring them indoors.
  • Turn off utilities if instructed to do so. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed.
  • Turn off propane tanks.
  • Avoid using the phone, except for serious emergencies.
  • Moor your boat if time permits.
  • Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

You should evacuate under the following conditions:

  • If you are directed by local authorities to do so. Be sure to follow their instructions.
  • If you live in a mobile home or temporary structure—such shelters are particularly hazardous during hurricanes no matter how well fastened to the ground.
  • If you live in a high-rise building—hurricane winds are stronger at higher elevations.
  • If you live on the coast, on a floodplain, near a river, or on an inland waterway.
  • If you feel you are in danger.

If you are unable to evacuate, go to your safe room. If you do not have one, follow these guidelines:

  • Stay indoors during the hurricane and away from windows and glass doors.
  • Close all interior doors—secure and brace external doors.
  • Keep curtains and blinds closed. Do not be fooled if there is a lull; it could be the eye of the storm – winds will pick up again.
  • Take refuge in a small interior room, closet, or hallway on the lowest level.
  • Lie on the floor under a table or another sturdy object.

After the Storm

  • Keep listening to radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards for updated information.
  • Wait until an area is declared safe before entering. If you have evacuated, be patient.
  • Wait until local authorities have ensured the area is safe for reentry before you try to return home.
  • Watch for closed roads. If you come upon a barricade or a flooded road, Turn Around Don’t Drown!
  • Stay on firm, dry ground. Moving water only 6 inches deep can sweep you off your feet.
  • Standing water may be electrically charged from power lines.
  • If using a generator, avoid carbon monoxide poisoning by following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Avoid weakened bridges and washed out roads.
  • Once home, check gas, water and electrical and appliances for damage.
  • Use a flashlight to inspect damage. Never use candles and other open flames indoors.
  • Wear proper shoes to prevent cutting feet on sharp debris.
  • Do not drink or prepare food with tap water until officials say it is safe.
  • Avoid electrocution by not walking in areas with downed power poles or standing water.

Know These Key Terms

Familiarize yourself with these terms to help identify a hurricane hazard:

Tropical Depression. An organized system of clouds and thunderstorms with a defined surface circulation and maximum sustained winds of 38 MPH (33 knots) or less. Sustained winds are defined as one-minute average wind measured at about 33 ft (10 meters) above the surface.

Tropical Storm. An organized system of strong thunderstorms with a defined surface circulation and maximum sustained winds of 39–73 MPH (34–63 knots).

Hurricane. An intense tropical weather system of strong thunderstorms with a well-defined surface circulation and maximum sustained winds of 74 MPH (64 knots) or higher.

Storm Surge. A dome of water pushed onshore by hurricane and tropical storm winds. Storm surges can reach 25 feet high and be 50–1000 miles wide.

Storm Tide. A combination of storm surge and the normal tide (i.e., a 15-foot storm surge combined with a 2-foot normal high tide over the mean sea level created a 17-foot storm tide).

Hurricane/Tropical Storm Watch. Hurricane/tropical storm conditions are possible in the specified area, usually within 36 hours. Tune in to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for information.

Hurricane/Tropical Storm Warning. Hurricane/tropical storm conditions are expected in the specified area, usually within 24 hours.

Short Term Watches and Warnings. These warnings provide detailed information about specific hurricane threats, such as flash floods and tornadoes.