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See? Twitter is Useful

Have you ever doubted the usefulness of Twitter?

Well, it can be a lifesaver! A couple of weeks ago a local Red Cross chapter was alerted to a home fire because they subscribe to their local news station’s Twitter account:

Normally, the fire departments call them when a family needs help. But in this case Leslie Anthony at the Red Cross already knew about the fire before that call.

“Actually, I found out when I turned on WQAD’s twitter. I follow the twitter everyday and that’s when I saw they we’re talking about a tavern that was on fire. We did contact the fire department and were told there was an apartment above the fire.”

That’s when Red Cross sent volunteers Cheryl and Bill Johnston.

Cheryl Johnston explains that Ron Buckwalter wasn’t home at the time but his family was inside, “Mom got them out, yep, they’re safe. Everything else can be replaced.”

A family of four is homeless, there’s nothing left to get out of their home, but thanks to the Red Cross their children Hannah and Caleb still have something.

Not everyone is on twitter. But Anthony is encouraging her staff and volunteers to start using it because in a situation like this one, those words led to their action and made a difference.

Anthony says, “And that’s how we get some of the information that we use to respond to disasters throughout the Quad Cities.”

You can follow Red Cross updates @RedCross.

You can also find your local chapter on Twitter (new chapters added each day so keep checking).

If you have any success stories like this, please let us know in the comments.

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