Over the past month, the American Red Cross released a new mobile app. No, you can’t listen to music through this app, and no, it doesn’t involve any games for you to play during your commute. What you can do with it, though, is something infinitely more important – you can stay safe. This Red Cross Emergency App gives access to important information including weather alerts, ways to contact family and friends during disasters, first aid guidance, and more that can be potentially life-saving during an emergency.
An article from Metro News in West Virginia, a state that has experienced a train derailment, a major winter storm, and severe floods already this year, quotes chief executive of the Red Cross West Virginia region Erica Mani as follows: “The idea is that the Red Cross is always wanting to make sure that not only are we responding to disasters, but that we’re preparing our citizens for being safe in the event of any emergency.” Such preparation is quite sensible and much more possible with this new program.
Another article on the new app outlines some of the features:
- Emergency first aid information for situations such as heart attacks and heart-related emergencies, as well as water safety information.
- Preloaded content so users can access guidance from Red Cross experts even without mobile connectivity.
- A single map with open Red Cross shelter locations and weather information.
- A home fire section with detailed prevention and safety tips as well as Red Cross “After the Fire” information.
- A “Make a Plan” feature to help families plan what to do and where to go if a disaster strikes.
There is no question that the Emergency App will be an incredible boon for the hundreds of thousands or even millions of Americans who, regrettably, will find themselves in the midst of emergency situations at some point in their lives. But with these features and with this information readily in hand at all times, the tolls of such emergencies can at the very least be mitigated.