FINDLAY (WTOL) - Todd James, executive director of the American Red Cross North Central Ohio Chapter is joining the California wildfire disaster relief effort.
Fast-moving wildfires are consuming thousands of acres in California, forcing tens of thousands of people from their homes. The American Red Cross is there, providing shelter and emotional support for the evacuees.
The fires are burning in both northern and southern parts of the state.
The Camp Fire to the north has burned 20,000 acres already, including almost the entire town of Paradise, population 26,000.
The Woolsey and Hill fires to the south have also burned thousands of acres. The Camp and Woolsey fires are threatening almost 50,000 homes and almost 100,000 residents have been ordered to evacuate.
Schools are closed, some hospitals have been evacuated, thousands are without power and several major highways are closed.
The Red Cross and local governments have numerous evacuation centers open where hundreds of people are seeking refuge, along with centers which are accepting animals. Weather forecasts call for more hot and dry weather, which could lead to more fires. The Red Cross is working with local officials to monitor the situation and respond as needed.
James will be serving on the senior leadership team for the Camp Fire relief operation as the Director of External Relations, overseeing the Government Operations, Community Partnerships, Fundraising and Public Affairs teams.
This is James’ third deployment in recent weeks. He recently served in North Carolina as part of the Hurricane Florence team and in Florida on the Hurricane Michael relief operation.
The Red Cross works 24/7 to be ready to respond to disasters like wildfires and other countless crises. Please donate to the Red Cross now to help. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.
Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation