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Tampa, Florida -- The American Red Cross launched Wednesday its official Hurricane App to give instant access to local and real time information on what to do before, during and after hurricanes.

"We want everyone to be ready for severe tropical weather," said Linda Carbone, CEOfor Florida's WestCoast Region. "The Red Cross Hurricane App allows people to receive and spread emergency information and to share their own status with friends and loved ones through social networks, anywhere, anytime."

The launch of the Red Cross hurricane app comes just before what is traditionally the busiest period of the Atlantic hurricane season. Features of the app include:

  • One touch "I'm safe" messaging that allows users to broadcast reassurance to family and friends via social media outlets that they are out of harm's way;
  • Location-based NOAA weather alerts for the United States and its territories users can share on social networks;
  • Remote monitoring of personalized weather alerts where family and friends reside
  • Locations of open Red Cross shelters;
  • Simple steps and checklists people can use to create a family emergency plan;
  • Preloaded content that gives users instant access to critical action steps, even without mobile connectivity;
  • Toolkit with flashlight, strobe light and audible alarm; and
  • Badges users can earn through interactive quizzes and share on social networks

To find the app, simply search "American Red Cross" in the Apple App store or Google Play Story for Android. Users can also call "**REDCROSS" from a cell phone and a text with a link to the app will be sent right to your phone.

TheHurricane App follows the recently released Red Cross First Aid App which has had nearly600,000 downloads in just six weeks. Testimonials and positive reviews haveshown how dozens of people already have used the app to help in real-lifesituations.