Two new Red Cross trailers to aid disaster victims

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Shelly Birkelo
Thursday, May 9, 2013

— Two new response trailers are helping local American Red Cross volunteers respond quickly in times of disaster.

The enclosed trailers, which each measure 5-by-8-feet, can be loaded with supplies for smaller incidents and hooked to the back of a tow vehicle, said Tammy DeGarmo, regional development manager for the American Red Cross Western Wisconsin.

DeGarmo works out of the Janesville office at 211 N. Parker Drive.

One trailer will be kept in Janesville and the other in Beloit. One already was used in Jefferson County during the recent Rock River flooding, DeGarmo said.

The trailers also can be used during winter storms, tornadoes and for multi-unit fires. They are capable of carrying 50 folding cots, 100 blankets, coolers, a bin of games, a bin of stuffed animals and a bin of supplies for volunteers, DeGarmo said.

“Each has all the basic supplies to set up a 50-person temporary shelter,” she said.

The trailers replace the large double-axle model the Red Cross kept stocked for a 100-person shelter. Its use was limited because few volunteers could navigate or drive it.

Trade-in of that trailer, a discount through Fagan Chevrolet and a $2,500 donation from Blackhawk Community Credit Union covered the $4,488 price for both trailers, hitches and signage, DeGarmo said.

Both the discounted trade-in and financial donation were critical to acquiring the trailers, DeGarmo said.

“We could not purchase them until we secured a sponsor,” she said. “So once we had funding for them, this allowed us to go ahead and make those purchases,'' she said.

Last updated: 10:38 am Tuesday, July 2, 2013

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