The Blood Bank of Delmarva released the below statement today, following a call from the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) for increased blood donations as Hurricane Florence makes landfall in North Carolina:

“We’re calling on all residents in Delmarva and surrounding areas to donate blood and platelets today and over the weekend as Hurricane Florence leaves many Americans in danger. In emergency situations, local blood supplies often reach critical lows and blood centers across the country are relied upon to help fill in the gaps. A continuous blood supply is vital to ensure that all areas, hospitals and patients impacted by the hurricane have access to the emergency blood they need. Now is the time for everyone to step up – and by taking one hour to donate blood, you can help save a life.”

About blood donations:

Donated blood is perishable; red cells last for 42 days, platelets last for 5 days (a component of blood that’s especially important for cancer patients), and plasma can be frozen for up to a year. In order to maintain a safe blood supply, a seven-day inventory of all blood types must be continually replenished.

You may donate if you are in good health, are at least 17 years old (16 years old with written consent from parent or legal guardian) and weigh at least 110 pounds. Donors over age 76 must have a letter from a physician.

BBD is urging donors to walk in to any of their centers or call 1-888-8-BLOOD-8 to make an appointment. Donors can also make an appointment online at