WASHINGTON -- The American Red Cross has released an all-inclusive Emergency App giving people instant access to weather alerts, life-saving information, and ways to contact family and friends in one free, easy-to-use app for mobile devices.
The Emergency App combines content from a group of award-winning Red Cross apps with additional information about what to do in case of 14 different types of emergencies and disasters. It also allows users to customize more than 35 emergency alerts based on their location and where loved ones live.
"What makes this app different is that it is a single 'go-to' source for everything from a hurricane, to a severe thunderstorm, to a home fire," said Dominick Tolli, vice president of emerging products and workplace safety for Red Cross. "It also allows you to instantly alert loved ones when a disaster is about to strike their community and see if they are okay using Family Safe."
"Family Safe" is a new, unique feature that allows the app user to notify loved ones who are in an area affected by an emergency or disaster. The recipient can instantly see the alert details as well as specific "what to do now" steps, and then respond with either "I'm safe" or "I'm not safe." This feature works even if the recipient has not downloaded the Emergency App. In addition to smartphones and tablets, this feature will be available on the new Apple Watch and can be downloaded from the Apple Watch App Store starting April 24.
Other features include:
•Emergency first aid information for situations such as heart attacks, heat-related emergencies as well as water safety information;
•Preloaded content so users can access guidance from Red Cross experts even without mobile connectivity;
•A single map with open Red Cross shelter locations and weather information;
•A home fire section with detailed prevention and safety tips as well as Red Cross "After the Fire" information;
•"Make a Plan" feature to help families plan what to do and where to go if a disaster strikes; and
•The ability to easily toggle between English and Spanish.
The app is free and available in app stores for smartphones and tablets. It can be found at http://www.redcross.org/apps