(ABC 6 NEWS) -- Hurricane Irene forced the cancellation of nearly 60 American Red Cross blood drives, causing a 2,000 blood and platelet donation shortage.
Even more blood drives are expected to be canceled over the next several days as storm cleanup continues along the East Coast, so the Red Cross is urging more people, in unaffected areas, to donate blood and platelets.
"Blood donated through the Red Cross can help patients locally and throughout the country, wherever there is a need," said Geoff Kaufmann, CEO of the local Red Cross Blood Services Region. "When disaster strikes, the need does not diminish, but blood donors in affected areas may find it difficult or impossible to get to a blood drive."
There is a blood drive scheduled for September 13th in Freeborn County at Alden Conger High School, 215 N Broadway. It runs from 1 until 6 p.m. that day.