The severe cold and snow not only wreaked havoc on nearly everyone, it also caused a shortfall in blood donations for the Red Cross.

Approximately 280 Red Cross blood drives in 25 states were canceled because of snow and the cold temperatures. Locally, 10 blood drives were canceled, resulting in 258 fewer blood and platelet donations, according to a news release from the organization.

Now the Red Cross is asking anyone who is able to donate to help offset the shortfall.

Blood drives will be held at St. John's United Church of Christ, 161 N. Main St. in Red Lion from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Saturday; the Greater Hanover Red Cross, 529 Carlisle St. in Hanover from 1 to 6:30 p.m. on Monday; and the Airville Volunteer Fire Department, 3576 Delta Road in Lower Chanceford Township from 3 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 16.

Supply: Despite the shortfall in donations, Linda Voss, CEO of the Red Cross Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Blood Services Region, said patients won't be left in the lurch.

"Thanks to generous Red Cross blood and platelet donors, blood products were available for patients who still needed transfusions despite the weather," she said.

Platelet donors, as well as blood donors with the most in-demand blood types -- O positive and negative, A negative and B negative -- are urgently needed to give blood in the days and weeks ahead to offset the shortfall, the release says.

To donate, a candidate must have a blood donor card or driver's license or two other forms of identification.


Those who are 17 years of age, weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 and younger also have to meet height and weight requirements, the release says.

For more information, or to make an appointment, call 1-800-Red Cross (1-800-733-2767), or go to

-- Reach Greg Gross at