Blood Donations Drop During Oklahoma's Winter Weather

Tuesday, December 29th 2015, 6:35 pm

By: News 9

This winter storm not only caused loss of power, it also meant the loss of blood donations.

The Oklahoma Blood Institute is scrambling to make up for Sunday and Monday.

The agency teamed up with the Thunder to try to rebound from the storm.

OBI got less than half of the blood donations they needed the past two days.

“Sunday, Monday with the storms, our donations just cratered, there was hardly anyone donating,” said Leslie Gamble with the Oklahoma Blood Institute.

Winter weather has dwindled the blood supply at the worst time.

This is already the hardest week of the year to get blood donations.

“Between Christmas and New Year is the toughest time for us to maintain the blood supply,” Gamble said. “The need does not take a holiday."

The winter storm turned roads into ice rinks and caused most blood donors to cancel appointments.

“We understand, we don't want people to take a big risk and get out and travel when they shouldn't,” Gamble told News 9.

The wicked weather also forced OBI to cancel a big blood drive in Lawton due to no electricity.

"120 donors we expected to give yesterday in Lawton and we were at zero,” Gamble explained.

With an average need of 1,000 blood donors each day, Oklahoma Blood Institute requires a lot of community support to supply the 150 hospitals that depend on it.

OBI is spreading the word about its 8th annual blood drive with the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday to prevent a blood shortage.

“Now that the roads are good, we need everyone to come out,” Gamble said.

If 1,000 people donate, that will make up for the drop in blood donations from the storm.

The Thunder-OBI blood drive is 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Cox Convention Center.

You can park for free in the garage below the Cox Convention Center.

One lucky donor will win a pair of tickets to a Thunder home game.


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