Florence helps Red Cross better prepare for Hurricane Michael

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— On the heels of Hurricane Florence, the Red Cross has prepared to mobilize again in expectation of Hurricane Michael

Barry Porter, regional CEO for the Red Cross, said there are still hundreds of people in shelters in the southeastern part of North Carolina, but the organization can reach pretty deep for resources.

With about 2,000 disaster relief volunteers in the state, the Red Cross estimates roughly 40 percent are prepared to answer the call for help at any given time.

Communities in southeast North Carolina are still trying to steady themselves after Florence and Porter said the back-to-back storms are dizzying, but resources are ready.

“Cleanup kits, repair kits, the ability to provide food, nursing staff, mental health staff, all of that is in a pretty good position because they’re still close at hand,” Porter said.

Hope Mills

Once again the Red Cross is at the drawing board, planning for shelters and counting beds. Porter said they’ve been in touch with local government and shelters throughout the Triangle have been identified.

“Partnering with faith-based organizations and other locations to say, if it becomes necessary and we feel the need, can you provide your shelter, your community based organization as a shelter. We have those on standby,” he said.

Camelot Village

As for volunteers, those registered in the region are prepared to work 12 to 14 hour days if needed.

“We’ve been putting out the call, asking people to do an update of their record. Are you available? And so, we think we’re adequately prepared for Michael because we just went through Florence,” Porter said.

Porter said potential shelter locations should be announced by about noon Thursday.