As part of National Flood Awareness Week, the American Red Cross is offering a free flood app for smart phones.
Liz Dorland, spokeswoman for the Red Cross chapter in Omaha/Council Bluffs, says the app offers a lot of useful tools in real-time, including letting you know if there’s potential flood danger nearby.
“It works off of your location, so you do need to have your location services turned on on your phone,” Dorland says. “It’ll tell you, no matter where you’re at, immediately whether you have the app open or you don’t have it open, if there’s a warning in your area, no matter where you’re traveling.”
Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States and Dorland says the app can help you be better informed and prepared. “There are facts and quizzes so you can test your knowledge about flooding,” she says. “Did you know that just six inches of swiftly-moving water can sweep you off your feet and just two feet of water can displace your car so your car can float down a street?”
The app also has a safety kit feature. Dorland says, “It’ll give you a flash light, it’ll give you an alert tone, it’ll give you an audible alert tone, so if you’re trapped because of flooding and rescuers are trying to get to you and they can’t find you or they can’t see you, you’ll be able to sound that audible alert.”
The app also has a one-touch “I’m safe” message that allows users to send a message out, letting family and friends know they are out of harms way. It can also let you know about nearby Red Cross shelters and real-time recovery resources for returning home and cleaning up. Dorland says the free flood app is available at the Apple App Store and at Google Play.