American Red Cross responds to winter storm and seeks blood donations in coming days, weeks

Red Cross works 24/7 to be ready to respond to disasters like storms and other countless crises

If you need assistance finding a shelter call 1-800-RED CROSS.

Due to the extreme winter weather in Texas, the American Red Cross is watching the situation and standing by to support local responses to the storms as needed.

The American Red Cross Serving Central and South Texas is supplying material support (cots, blankets, comfort kits, hygiene items, food, water and snacks) to 20 warming centers in 14 counties across the region. Nine of which are in Austin.

The record-breaking cold and severe winter weather across most of the U.S. has forced the cancellation of Red Cross blood drives in approximately 30 states, impacting approximately 16,000 blood, platelet and convalescent plasma donations this month.

The Red Cross is urging healthy individuals in unaffected areas, especially those with type O blood, to give now. If you are interested in donating blood, the American Red Cross Serving Central and South Texas encourages people to donate to the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center.

Blood donation appointments can be made for the coming days and weeks by downloading the free Blood Donor App, clicking here, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.

“The dangerously cold weather we’ve experienced over the past week is unprecedented for the state of Texas,” said Keith Rhodes, CEO of the American Red Cross North Texas Region. “Amid below freezing temperatures, tens of thousands have lost access to gas and water, and millions have lost power leaving residents looking for alternative ways to keep their families warm. With additional extreme winter weather forecasted, the Red Cross is working with government and community partners to support warming centers across the region for temporary relief from the elements.”

Power outages tips

  • Surround your food with ice in a cooler or refrigerator.
  • Don’t eat food exposed to temperatures higher than 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Install carbon monoxide alarms in your home if you use a generator.
  • Don’t use candles for light. Instead, use a flashlight.

To make a donation, click or tap here or call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

For updates, follow the Red Cross on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

If you are interested in donating blood in the KSAT Community blood drive with University Health March 1-2, click here to make an appointment.

Update: KSAT Community blood drive with University Health moved to March 1-2 due to inclement weather

KSAT Community operates in partnership with University Health, Energy Transfer and Randolph-Brooks Federal Credit Union.