PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) — The rain is finally easing in California after nine consecutive atmospheric rivers off the Pacific Ocean saturated the state since New Year’s Day.
The back-to-back storms may leave behind more than $1 billion in damage up and down the state after the devastating flooding, more than 500 landslides, closed highways, sinkholes and damage to infrastructure.
This would be the first billion-dollar disaster this year following the $18 billion in weather and climate disasters in 2022.
As the number of climate-related disasters goes up, more people are depending on the American Red Cross. During 2020 and 2021 alone, they averaged a new, major disaster response every 10 days, with Red Cross volunteers continuously on the ground, setting up shelters, arranging for hot meals and sheltering thousands of people with no place else to go.
More than 600 of American Red Cross disaster workers, including 11 from the Cascades Region, are helping people now with a safe place to stay, food to eat, relief supplies, emotional support and comfort. Here’s a look at the numbers so far:
- 80 shelters
- More than 7,100 shelter stays
- More than 31,000 meals and snacks
The Red Cross will also be in California in the days and weeks to come, supporting people as they continue to recover from the storms.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
You can help people affected by disasters like floods, fires and countless other crises by making a gift to Red Cross Disaster Relief. Donations for Disaster Relief enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
For those interested in helping people specifically affected by the storms and floods in California, the Red Cross asks that they write “California storms & floods” in the memo line of a check and mail it to their local Red Cross chapter with a completed donation form to the address on the form or to their local Red Cross chapter. Find the donation form at redcross.org/donate.
If you have the time, you can make a significant impact as a Red Cross volunteer. Review their most urgently needed volunteer positions at redcross.org/volunteertoday and consider attending one of their open houses:
January 18, Roseburg Red Cross, 870 NE Alameda Avenue, 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
January 25, Medford Red Cross, 1050 Crater Lake Ave Suite A, 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
February 7, Eugene Red Cross, 440 E Broadway Suite 200, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.