We’ve received several inquiries recently from our members and the public asking how they can help in the wake of this week’s severe weather and tornadoes.
The National Weather Service has called yesterday’s severe weather a “historic tornado outbreak”. Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi and Georgia all had severe weather—with some of the worst weather in Alabama and Mississippi. In fact, April has been a record-setting month for the highest number of tornadoes, easily breaking the previous record of 267 tornadoes set in 1974.
The AVMA and AVMF have reached out to the local Veterinary Medical Associations in several of the worst hit states to offer our assistance—for now we are on standby awaiting any specific requests.
As with the Japan response efforts, we are also working with our animal emergency response partners who make up the US-based National Animal Rescue and Sheltering Coalition (NARSC). The NARSC was established in 2006 as an outgrowth of the unprecedented U.S. disaster season of 2005, which included Hurricane Katrina. In the aftermath of that season, the major national animal protection organizations in the U.S. developed a working coalition to facilitate responses to large-scale incidents and address ongoing concerns. This coalition represents more than 15 million animal care and control professionals, volunteers and pet owners.
NARSC members have been communicating daily to share information related to their individual response efforts to allow for coordination of activities. Currently most NARSC members are on standby waiting to determine how best respond to any specific requests from local officials.
We’ll post updates as we get more information.