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      Red Cross opening shelters in Birmingham area for those affected by flooding

      The American Red Cross is on the ground here in the Birmingham area helping those affected by flooding. Red Cross volunteers are canvassing affected neighborhoods to assess the damage. Emergency shelters are open at the following locations to help residents impacted by the flood by offering a safe place to stay, a hot meal, minor first aid, and a shoulder to lean on.

      • Dawson Memorial Baptist Church: 1114 Oxmoor Road; Homewood, AL 35209
      • Helena Cumberland Presbyterian Church: 3396 Helena Road; Helena, AL 35080

      The Red Cross offers the following tips for those in the affected area to stay safe:

      • Continue listening to local radio or television stations or a NOAA Weather Radio for updated information and instructions. If you are away from home, return only when authorities say it is safe to do so.
      • Before entering your home, look outside for loose power lines, damaged gas lines, foundation cracks or other damages.
      • Watch out for wild animals, especially poisonous snakes that may have come into your home with the floodwater.
      • If you smell natural or propane gas or hear a hissing noise, leave immediately and call the fire department.
      • If power lines are down outside your home, do not step in puddles or standing water.
      • Keep children and pets away from hazardous sites and floodwater.
      • When it is safe to return home, wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, and sturdy shoes when examining your walls, doors, staircases and windows for damage.
      • During cleanup, wear protective clothing, including rubber gloves and rubber boots.
      • Make sure your food and water are safe. Discard items that have come in contact with floodwater, including canned goods, water bottles, plastic utensils and baby bottle nipples. When in doubt, throw it out!
      • Do not use water that could be contaminated to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, wash hands, make ice or make baby formula.