From the front lines – Colorado

Colorado flash flood

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be bringing the American Red Cross response in Colorado right to you. Todd James, Community Chapter Executive in Hancock County, has deployed to assist with the relief efforts following terrible flash flooding earlier this month. Todd will share his experiences with you from his first-hand perspective. He’s his first entry:

So, I’m on my second full day at the disaster relief operation here in Colorado, after getting in late Friday night. I spent yesterday meeting my Public Affairs team and getting caught up on all that has been accomplished and planning for the next few days.

Also yesterday, we moved our headquarters to a new location. This isn’t unusual-as an operation moves into different phases, we are always looking at the best way to deliver services to those affected and the infrastructure we need to do the work. I have to tell you, it is amazing to watch a relief operation being set up. Imagine putting a complete business into operation in just a day or two. That’s what our Logistics and Disaster Service Technology teams do. They set up the entire infrastructure for service delivery, communications, warehousing, transportation, feeding, bulk delivery and all the other services our disaster responders are bringing to the communities affected by disaster. And they do it in just a day or two! The coordination, teamwork and dedication are awe inspiring.

Today, I’ll be traveling to the Loveland and Boulder areas, which were hard hit by the flooding. There are some areas that have just become accessible in the last twenty four hours, so our Emergency Response Vehicles are going in with food and supplies, our Disaster Assessment teams will visit the area to get an idea of what the needs of the residents will be and our Disaster Health and Disaster Mental Health teams will go in to help the people that have lost homes, possessions and loved ones to the floods.

A funny story to close out. I didn’t leave Ohio until Friday night, but on Thursday, several people stopped me and said they saw on the news I had already left. Apparently one of the stations did a story on my deployment and used footage of me at the airport from one of my other deployments! Guess they have plenty of footage of me leaving from the last couple of years.

If you could send Todd some well wishes, what would you tell him? Leave your response in the comments section below.

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