Severe weather started rolling through eastern South Dakota and bearing down on Lake Poinsett, north of Sioux Falls. That is when Scott Ross started to notice his Red Cross Tornado App flashing with warnings. Ross, who owns a cabin at Lake Poinsett, is a Grand Forks, North Dakota resident. He was in Grand Forks at the time the severe weather hit the area.
He immediately called a neighbor to warn them of the severe weather rolling in and to take shelter.
“He actually went to warn another couple in a mobile home on the other side of my cabin,” Ross said. You could here the intensity in his voice and the fear in his voice.”
Later on, Ross received a call from the neighbor he warned and said, “It’s all gone.” Several homes were destroyed as a result of a tornado, including the mobile home next to Ross’s cabin. One man was injured and another woman was killed as a result.
“I asked my neighbor if that phone call from me saved his life and he said ‘Yes it did’, ” Ross added. “There are no sirens there to warn people and he did not have a weather radio.”
Following the storm, clean-up efforts began, which included removing trees that were knocked down as a result of the straight line winds. As residents started chopping wood and cleaning up homes, Red Cross volunteers were on the scene to provide food and hydration.
“It was a refreshing site to see somebody down there,” Ross added. “You always hear about the hurricanes and stuff like that, and of course the tragedy with this, but they were still there.”
Red Cross App’s have been downloaded over 3-million times in the past year. They can be downloaded directly from the iTunes or Google Play app stores.