The American Red Cross is hosting a blood drive and smoke alarm installation event in Cockrell Hill on Saturday, January 14, 2017 starting at 9:30 a.m. and ending at 3:30 p.m. This event will be part of the American Red Cross nationwide effort to install almost 15,000 smoke alarms in homes across the country over the upcoming weekend surrounding the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. The project is part of the ongoing Red Cross Home Fire Campaign.
“January is National Blood Donor Month; it’s a perfect time to resolve to help save lives by giving blood or platelets. We also know that installing smoke alarms cuts the risk of someone dying from a home fire in half, so we’re excited to be joined by our partners from across this community to host this blood drive and install smoke alarms,” said Keith Rhodes, Chief Executive Officer of the American Red Cross North Texas Region. “We also will be teaching people how to be safe should a fire occur in their home.”
The blood drive will be held at the Cockrell Hill Baptist Church at 1128 S. Cockrell Hill Rd., Dallas, Texas 75211. The American Red Cross has a severe winter blood shortage and has issued an emergency call for blood and platelet donors to give now and help save patient lives.
Those interested in donating blood at this drive can visit redcrossblood.org and search for sponsor code “MLKDRIVE”. Donors can also save time on the day of their donation by completing RapidPass, the pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire, online.
The Red Cross in Cockrell Hill and across the country aims to reduce deaths and injuries from home fires by 25 percent as part of the organization’s nationwide Home Fire Preparedness Campaign. Home fires are the largest disaster the Red Cross responds to each year.
The Red Cross will be going through neighborhoods in Cockrell Hill on January 14 to install smoke alarms in homes that need them and teach people about what they can do now to be prepared should a fire break out in their home. Joining the Red Cross will be Dallas Fire and Rescue, Cockrell Hill Police and Fire Departments, Cedar Hill Fire Department, FEMA Corps, AmeriCorps, Grainger, and GRAMMY award-winning artist Fred Hammond.
In December 2016, the Red Cross in DFW responded to more than 100 home fires and served over 300 individuals. Home fires are the largest and least known disaster to which the Red Cross responds.
131 LIVES SAVED The Red Cross Home Fire Campaign, launched in October 2014, is a multi-year nationwide initiative to reduce deaths and injuries caused by home fires by 25 percent. Since the start of the campaign, the Red Cross and its partners have helped to save at least 131 lives and installed more than 619,000 smoke alarms in 8,400 cities and towns nationwide.
Working with more than 3,700 partners, the campaign has reached more than 721,000 people and made nearly 263,000 households safer, replacing more than 39,000 smoke alarm batteries and helping create more than 220,000 home fire escape plans. Through programs like The Pillowcase Project, the campaign has also helped teach more than 657,000 young people about home fire preparedness and safety.
SIMPLE STEPS TO SAVE LIVES As part of the Home Fire Campaign, the Red Cross is calling on everyone to take two simple steps that can save lives: check their existing smoke alarms and practice fire drills at home,
There are several things families and individuals can do to increase their chances of surviving a fire:
- If someone doesn’t have smoke alarms, install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Local building codes vary and there may be additional requirements where someone lives.
- If someone does have alarms, test them today. If they don’t work, replace them.
- Make sure that everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.
- Practice that plan. What’s the household’s escape time?
RED CROSS APPS People can learn how to help prevent a home fire and what to do if one occurs by downloading the Red Cross Emergency App. Children can have fun and learn how to prevent a home fire and other emergencies in the Monster Guard: Prepare for Emergencies App. The First Aid App provides expert advice including what to do for burns, broken bones and breathing and cardiac emergencies. The apps can be downloaded for free in app stores or at redcross.org/apps.
WHAT PEOPLE CAN DO People can visit redcross.org/homefires to find out more about how to protect themselves and their loved homes from fire. To find out more about the Home Fire Campaign in this area or to become a volunteer, visit redcross.org/dfw.