Boston cell phone service is reported cut off to prevent the possibility of remotely detonating any more devices in response to the Boston Marathon explosions earlier today (and less clearly defined—at this time—possible third explosive device at the city’s JFK Library).
One tool we should all know about, especially when disaster strikes, is the Red Cross Safe and Well Listing. When you are in an emergency situation (and I truly hope you never are), when you have access to get online, you can go to the Red Cross website and register yourself as safe and well, and add messages. Family and friends from afar who may not be able to reach you directly, can search by name, phone number, or pre-disaster address, and get your messages, letting them know you are alright. As someone who had family traveling overseas and unable to get word for days after the 9/11 attacks when we were living in NY, take it from me–give this gift to the people you love.
Here are the website’s directions (and as expected, this afternoon, the website is slow due to extensive traffic of people checking in. PLEASE…Be patient–the folks anxious for the information about you will be so grateful):
Disasters often make it difficult to stay in touch with loved ones. The American Red Cross Safe and Well website is a central location for people in disaster areas in the United States to register their current status, and for their loved ones to access that information. It helps provide displaced families with relief and comfort during a stressful time.
The Safe and Well website is easy to use:
- If you are currently being affected by a disaster somewhere in the U.S., click List Myself as Safe and Well, enter your pre-disaster address and phone number, and select any of the standard message options.
- If you are concerned about a loved one in the U.S., click Search Registrants and enter the person’s name and pre-disaster phone number OR address. If they have registered, you will be able to view the messages they have posted.
Safe and Well is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and is accessible in both English and Spanish.