Red Cross calls for blood donations as winter weather clears

December 9, 2013

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Severe winter weather forced the cancellation of 32 Red Cross blood drives in Arkansas, southwest Missouri and the Memphis, Tenn., area, which resulted in a shortfall of about 1,000 expected blood and platelet donations over the past five days. 

As residents are able to return to normal activities and it’s considered safe to travel, the American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to make a blood or platelet donation appointment by visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS.

Blood donations of all types are needed to maintain an adequate supply for patients in need, especially types O negative, B negative and A negative. Platelet donations are also needed as they must be transfused within in five days of donation and must be constantly replenished.  

“With the holiday season upon us and many regular doors likely to become busy with activities and travel, giving now helps to ensure an adequate blood supply in the days and weeks ahead, ,” said Marci Manley, spokesperson for the Red Cross Greater Ozarks-Arkansas Blood Services Region. “A single blood donation can help save up to three lives and give patients another opportunity to spend time with their loved ones this holiday season.”

To search for upcoming Red Cross blood donation opportunities in your area, click here.

How to donate blood

Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.