PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS IS A DYNAMIC STORY AND CHANGING RAPIDLY. UPDATES WILL BE PLACED IN THE DISASTER NEWSROOM.
Atlanta, GA – Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams are actively responding to the deadly tornadoes which have ravaged much of the southeastern United States over the last two days. To date, at least 272 lives have been lost while many more have suffered injuries and face catastrophic property damage. Hundreds of thousands are currently without electricity.
Currently, EDS personnel are providing food, beverages, and emotional/spiritual care to storm victims in Arkansas, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Georgia. Additional resources, such as clean-up kits, are being made available as needed in a number of areas.
Additional Salvation Army EDS personnel and mobile feeding units currently on standby in Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Maryland and West Virginia, Florida, and Texas will be deployed as needed.
Arkansas – An EDS mobile feeding unit has been sent to the Pocahontas area of Randolph County. The main levee protecting that town from the Black River has broken as of 10:00am today. Highway 67 between Pocahontas and Walnut Ridge is under water.
Alabama – Alabama, which was especially hard hit, has seen the death count rise to approximately 180 people. Salvation Army EDS personnel and mobile feeding units are serving multiple locations throughout the state. Three mobile feeding crews are serving in Tuscaloosa, two in Guntersville, one in Phil Campbell, one in Marion County, one in Molten, and six in Birmingham. The Salvation Army Corps and Shelter in Tuscaloosa was destroyed as tornadoes ripped through the area.
Mississippi – Mobile feeding units are currently serving residents of Kemper County, Webster County, and Oxford. Additionally information will be shared as reports are made available.
Tennessee – EDS personnel are actively serving residents of Cleveland, Chattanooga, Murfreesboro, Dyersburg, Greenville, and Memphis. Additional units are on standby throughout the state ready to respond as needed.
Cleveland, TN: EDS staff and more than 100 volunteers have provided approximately 800 meals to first responders and victims through mobile feeding operations. Additionally, beverages and snacks are being provided to emergency shelter residents at St. Theresa's Catholic Church.
Chattanooga, TN: The Salvation Army served throughout the night in Catoosa County, GA where there were a confirmed 30 severe injuries and 7 fatalities. Mobile kitchen units are currently serving in Walker, Dade, Catoosa, and Hamilton Counties. The Salvation Army is partnering with the Chattanooga Red Cross and The Southern Baptist Convention Disaster Relief to meet shelter and food needs of affected residents.
Murfreesboro, TN: The Salvation Army has deployed its canteen and is currently serving storm damaged areas with emergency food, drink, and clean-up kits. Reports have been given to The Salvation Army which indicate that more than 150 homes have been affected and that residents face at least 72 hours without electricity.
Dyersburg, TN: The community of Southtown in Dyer County has been evacuated to Dyersburg for fear of levee failure. The Salvation Army will be feeding temporary shelter residents from their soup kitchen in Dyersburg. Mobile feeding units will serve volunteers who are sand bagging areas in an effort to save homes.
Clarksville, TN: The Salvation Army in Clarksville had to evacuate their building due to flooding. Despite this setback, EDS personnel are assessing local flood damage and are prepared to serve as needed.
Greenville, TN: Stationary and roving feeding units are in place and serving flooded areas.
Memphis, TN: The Salvation Army of Memphis has served breakfast, lunch, and dinner at the Emergency Operations Center and are providing the above meals to those who are filling sandbags at the Pyramid. EDS personnel are also on standby to provide mass feeding to potential flood victims.
Kentucky – Following severe storms yesterday and today, the state of Kentucky faces extensive flood risks.
Paducah, KY: The Salvation Army of Paducah is providing meals, beverages, and support for the local temporary emergency shelter serving flood evacuees. Preparations are also being made to support sandbagging efforts.
Henderson, KY: The Salvation Army of Henderson is currently assessing potential flood damage. The town of Reed has been evacuated. They continue to respond to the tornado that hit Poole, KY. EDS personnel have been requested to provide assistance in Union County to deliver meals to those sandbagging. Teams are on standby to provide meals to the local shelter.
Louisville, KY: The Louisville Salvation Army is on standby to serve should there be any flooding and continues to monitor the rising waters.
Georgia – The Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services teams in Georgia are on standby and ready to serve victims, first responders, and volunteers from mobile feeding units in Georgia and Alabama. In addition to feeding, The Salvation Army is prepared to provide clean-up kits containing brooms, mops, buckets and cleaning supplies, hygiene kits, and emotional/spiritual care. Because of recorded deaths and destruction in Catoosa, Floyd and Walker Counties, Governor Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency for Georgia.
The Salvation Army is grateful to the public for their continued support.
The best way to help tornado survivors and rescue workers is to make a financial contribution. Monetary donations allow disaster responders to immediately meet the specific needs of disaster survivors. The Salvation Army asks those who want to help to visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.orgor call 1-800-SAL-ARMY and designate their gift "April 2011 Tornado Outbreak." Checks may be made out to:
The Salvation Army Disaster Relief
Atlanta, GA 30384-0339
At this point, in-kind donations are not being accepted outside the disaster area. Used clothing and used furniture are seldom required during an incident. However, these gifts are vitally important in supporting the day-to-day work of your local Salvation Army. Please consider giving these items to your local Salvation Army Thrift Store or dial 1-800-SA-TRUCK.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar spent is used to carry out those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.About The Salvation Army