In wake of the powerful storms that rocked Carroll County Friday night and Sunday, cooling centers and shelters have been opened in Hillsville and Galax to help those without power trying to deal with soaring temperatures.
In Hillsville, the Hillsville Pentecostal Holiness Church opened Monday as a cooling center/shelter, while the American Red Cross opened Gladeville Elementary School on Sunday night as a shelter for those without power.
Hillsville Mayor Greg Crowder began his tenure as Mayor dealing with the storms that rocked the town. On Monday, he was busy going door-to-door along with interim Police Chief Jason Hawks and interim Town Manager Judy Bolt making sure everyone was safe.
“Me and Judy and Jason assessed all the damage (Sunday) and today. We have an all-out effort to locate any people without electricity or without oxygen,” Crowder said. “Hillsville Pentecostal Holiness is open for people without electricity. It will be open all day (Monday) and people can bring a cot if they need to stay.”
Crowder said if anyone in the community has a need or knows someone with a need for the center and/or needs help with transportation or any other issue, they should call the Hillsville Police Department at (276) 728-2251 and a dispatcher will send someone.
“We’ve worked real good together. We have a list of shut-ins and we are going from house-to-house checking. Councilman Billy Walls is going house-to-house with us and we have officers going house-to-house as well,” Crowder said. “I feel like for the cards we’ve been dealt, we’ve done a real good job. Everybody is out working extra hard.”
At 8 p.m. on Sunday, the Wood’s River Chapter of the American Red Cross opened a shelter for anyone needing assistance due to the recent power outages in Carroll County. The shelter is located at the Gladesville Elementary School on Glendale Road in Galax.
The elderly, families with young children, or those suffering from respiratory problems are encouraged to use the facility. Please bring a pillow, blanket, and any necessary medications. The Red Cross will provide a cot, snacks, drinks, and any required meals.
Carroll County Emergency Services Coordinator Mike Mock said the shelter would be open all day Monday. A decision would be made later today to see if there was still a need to keep the school open as a shelter.
“Pretty much anybody can use it. If it is someone medically that needs to be cared for, they need to make arrangements for their care,” Mock said. “Usually we can help them get oxygen ordered, but in most cases they are better off if they need oxygen to order them through their supplier.”
Mock said anyone needing a cooling center or shelter should call (276) 236-8101. If there is a need to reopen a center at a later date, the Department of Social Services and the American Red Cross will attempt to do so.