Staying Prepared Proves Vital Yet Again in Disaster Response and Financial Assistance
San Diego, March 2, 2010 – On Saturday February 27, 2010, an 8.8 magnitude earthquake struck the nation of Chile. Chilean officials report that 2 million people have been affected and approximately 1.5 million houses have been damaged. The American Red Cross has pledged an initial $50,000 for immediate relief efforts and is ready to provide further assistance if needed.
Due to the disaster, the nations utilities such as electricity, water supply and communication systems are down or restricted. Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport in Santiago was initially closed due to damage but has now been reopened to aid relief efforts. However, major ports in the country have sustained damage and several bridges connecting central areas have collapsed making access to affected areas difficult.
The Chilean Red Cross disaster team is on ground and working in conjunction with the Chilean government and the Chilean National Emergency Office. In addition, neighboring Red Cross disaster experts are en route to Chile to assist in the disaster relief efforts.
As the American Red Cross continues its work in Chile, it also continues to provide aid to Haiti where over 1.3 million have been helped since the January earthquakes.
The American Red Cross is able to respond financially and otherwise, to worldwide disasters because of the generosity of our community. Members of the public who donated money to the International Response Fund made it possible for the Red Cross to help with the relief efforts in Chile as well as continue the response in Haiti and other disaster-hit areas.
The San Diego/Imperial Counties Chapter of the American Red Cross has not been called to assist in Chile; nevertheless, we are prepared and ready to go their aid if needed.
The American Red Cross is currently accepting donations to the International Response Fund, which is used in assisting our global neighbors affected by a disaster like those experiencing the devastation in Haiti and in Chile.