On the Site:


Red Cross urges Utahns get prepared for natural disasters during National Preparedness Month

Aug 29, 2023, 12:07 PM | Updated: Aug 30, 2023, 7:15 am

MURRAY, Utah — From ongoing devastation in Hawaii to keeping eyes on the pending storm in Florida, the American Red Cross is staying busy.

In Utah, the American Red Cross is going into September’s National Preparedness Month with an essential message for those who call the West home. The organization wants to ensure Utahns are prepared no matter what may come this way.

Jeremiah Lafranca, Executive Director of the Greater Salt Lake Area chapter of the American Red Cross, said just this year alone, they have responded to 15 major weather slash climate-related disasters.

Some deployments have been farther away. Others have been closer. All have hit close to home in one way or another.

Lafranca said they have three volunteers heading down to Florida from Utah in case the expected Hurricane Idalia and associated storms hit.

“We’re gonna be looking at shelters, making sure we have those setup, that we have cots, that we have all the appropriate things we need for the shelters. Also, working to make sure we have food in place,” Lafranca said.

As we go into September’s National Preparedness Month, he said this is the time to check and double-check.

“I mean, when you look at what happened in Hawaii and how quick that was, people didn’t have warning. They didn’t have time. And so, that’s again something we deal with here. Especially wildfires. If we have a wildfire here and the wind is going, that can jump really fast and can go long distances,” said Lafranca.

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints donates $1M to Red Cross for Maui wildfire relief

While seasons change, he said all families should always have an evacuation plan with items that should be ready to go around the clock. Some of those items include an emergency kit, prescriptions, important documents, pet supplies, and cash.

“Cash is a good thing to have just in case, you know, any kind of electric problems or whatnot, and you’re not able to access money through your debit cards or credit cards,” Lafranca said.

When looking at Hawaii, he said they deployed several volunteers for three weeks. Lafranca said they are planning on deployments for longer periods of time, which could be as long as March of next year because of the devastation.

To learn more about getting involved, volunteering, and donating, you are encouraged to visit the American Red Cross at its website. 

KSL 5 TV Live

Emergency Preparedness

Canyons sticker...

Katija Stjepovic

Cottonwood Canyons sticker program is underway

Dozens of people lined up Wednesday to get their cars inspected, stickered, and cleared for the canyons ahead of winter and ski season.

29 days ago

Clearing Little Cottonwood Creek...

Jed Boal

Creek clearing is underway in Salt Lake to minimize threat of flooding

Many Utah communities are working proactively to minimize flooding that may happen when the snowmelt runoff really gets going in the next couple of months.

8 months ago

FILE (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)...

Tamara Vaifanua

Importance of good hygiene and sanitation after a natural disaster

When we talk about emergency preparedness, a lot of us probably haven’t thought about hygiene and sanitation.

1 year ago

(KSL TV)...

Tamara Vaifanua, KSL TV

Be Ready Utah: how to prevent potential hazards in your home

You may not realize the number of serious safety hazards lurking around your home, here are ways to prevent these hazards from becoming emergencies.

2 years ago

FILE: Box Elder County wildfire (Image courtesy Utah Fire info)...

Tamara Vaifanua

Want to be better prepared for emergencies? Here’s what Utah Emergency Management suggests

With wildfires, drought, snowstorms, earthquakes, and a pandemic, Utah emergency managers are reminding the public to prepare for any and all types of emergencies. 

2 years ago

Multiple buildings along the Wasatch Front sustained damage after an earthquake near Magna....


Preparedness Is Key To Earthquake Safety

While earthquakes can't be predicted, people can be prepared for them.

5 years ago

Sponsored Articles

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Design mockup half in white and half in color of luxury house interior with open plan living room a...

Lighting Design

Lighting Design 101: Learn the Basics

These lighting design basics will help you when designing your home, so you can meet both practical and aesthetic needs.

an antler with large horns int he wilderness...

Three Bear Lodge

Yellowstone in the Fall: A Wildlife Spectacle Worth Witnessing

While most people travel to this park in the summer, late fall in Yellowstone provides a wealth of highlights to make a memorable experience.

a diverse group of students raising their hands in a classroom...

Little Orchard Preschool

6 Benefits of Preschool for Kids

Some of the benefits of preschool for kids include developing independence, curiosity, and learning more about the world.

Red Cross urges Utahns get prepared for natural disasters during National Preparedness Month