Winter storm causes regional blood shortage

Feb 22, 2013

Yesterday's storm shut down many blood centers in Mid-Missouri, leading to a blood shortage in the region.

Phillip Iman is a disaster specialist with the American Red Cross heart of Missouri chapter. He said the weather yesterday forced the cancellation of many blood drives

“In cold weather like this,” he said, “not as many people get out to donate blood and the need is just the same all throughout the year. It’s very high and so they said, ‘What are we going to do?’”

Iman encourages eligible people to donate blood once the roads are clear and they can safely make it a donation center or drive.

Iman also says American Red Cross was contacted by Boone County Emergency Management to help those stranded on Interstate 70 yesterday, but their volunteers did not have the capability to get there because of the road conditions.

“We don’t have a fleet of four-wheel-drive vehicles, nor are our volunteers paid,” he said. “We don’t put them in a situation that would be dangerous for them and that would make them part of the problem and not part of the solution, so we weren’t able to help.”