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Red Cross ask for blood and platelet donations after holiday weekend

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The American Red Cross said they are expecting a significant blood shortage following the weekend of July 4.

The organization said that someone in the U.S. needs a blood transfusion every two seconds. They're asking eligible blood and platelet donors to donate once an emergency request is issued.

Christy Peters, communication manager for northern Ohio Red Cross, said that while blood shortage around holidays is normal, it's more of an issue in the summer months.

"People travel over the weekend, and that impacts us," Peters said. "The businesses who sponsor us sometimes close for the holiday so we can't have blood drives."

The Red Cross is asking eligible donors to donate between July 1 and July 5. 

While an emergency request has not been issued, Peters said the Red Cross wants to make sure they have blood available in case of an emergency.

"Every pint matters when attendance decreases," Peters said.

Peters said once blood is collected, it takes three days to go through testing before the blood is able to be sent to hospitals.

The Red Cross said blood donors must be in good general health, be at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds.

To find a blood drive near you, visit redcrossblood.org/give.

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