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Utah monitoring Oklahoma tornado disaster

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - All missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the affected areas are safe.
"Make no doubt about it, these rubble piles aren't three, four, five feet high. They could be as much as 30 feet high," -Tom Panuzio.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - All missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the affected areas are safe.

Latter-day Saint leaders in Oklahoma are organizing relief centers and they're working with Oklahoma agencies to help the victims.

This is a critical time for tornado survivors who are trapped underneath rubble.

"Make no doubt about it, these rubble piles aren't three, four, five feet high. They could be as much as 30 feet high," said former assistant director to FEMA, Tom Panuzio.

Panuzio worked closely with President George Bush Senior as an assistant FEMA Director. He responded to hundreds of disasters across the United States.

He says rescue crews have 48 hours or until around 1 p.m. May 21 to find trapped victims before their chances of survival drop significantly.

"That's what history tells us. Now there is certain examples of where you can survive," said Panuzio.

Utah urban rescue crews are on standby waiting to deploy.

In addition, 1,400 Red Cross volunteers are on stand-by waiting to help.

"They are ready to deploy at a moments notice if needed. We can have volunteers on the plane to the disaster zone in two to three hours after calling them up for deployment," said American Red Cross of Utah spokeswoman, Teresa Zundel.

Panuzio says the best way to help the victims in Oklahoma is to donate to the Red Cross. "I've worked with the Red Cross 25 years. Give money to the American Red Cross. It will go directly to the disaster and it's very critical to give early in the disaster project," said Panuzio.

Click on the attached link to give to the American Red Cross.  Click on the "Donate Funds" link.  

You can also give to the Red Cross by texting "Red Cross 90999" and $10 dollars from your cell phone account will go toward the organization, according to Zundel. 




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