Blood Donations Needed Nationwide in Aftermath of Hurricane Irene

August 29, 2011

Blood donations Needed in the Aftermath of Hurricane Irene

Red Cross Urges You to Give Blood and Platelets


(Nashville, Tenn., Aug. 29, 2011)


Hurricane Irene packed a punch on the east coast, but the effects of the storm are felt nationwide.


So far, Hurricane Irene is responsible for the cancellation of more than 60 American Red Cross blood drives.  Those cancellations resulted in a loss of more than 2,100 units of blood. 


Since storm damage and power outages are expected to cause additional cancellations in the coming days, the Red Cross is urging immediate blood and platelet donations nationwide. 


“Right now, there is an immediate need for blood platelets.  Platelets are the fragile cells that control bleeding and can be used by cancer patients and those undergoing chemotherapy.  Platelets have a shelf-life of just five days, so they must constantly be replenished,” says Tim Ryerson, CEO, Tennessee Valley Region.


To schedule an appointment to donate blood or platelets, call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit us online at


Your blood donation will help boost the Labor Day weekend blood supply, as well.  In fact, it could give your gas tank a boost.  Anyone who presents to donate blood with the Red Cross Sept. 2-7 (Friday-Wednesday is automatically entered into a drawing for a $1,000 gas card.


Nationwide, around 44,000 blood donations are needed every day to meet the needs of accident victims, cancer patients and children with blood disorders.  These patients and others rely on blood products during their treatment.


How to Donate Blood:

Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit for more information or to make an appointment. All blood types are needed to ensure the Red Cross maintains an adequate blood supply. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Donors must be in general good health, weigh at least 110 pounds and be at least 17 years old (16 with completed Parental Consent Form). New height and weight restrictions apply to donors 18 and younger. 


About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation's blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at