Posted by Ron Schenone on Aug 10, 2012 | The American Red Cross has three free applications that every Android user should have on their phones. These applications are all available at Google Play and the best part is that all three applications are free. Before I explain to you what these applications do, I should state that these applications should be read before an accident or natural disaster strikes, and not during such an event. The three applications are worthless if you try to read the instructions during an actual emergency. This would be like handing a stroke victim your CPR card and advising him/her that the instructions to save their life are printed on the back of the card! SOS by the American Red Cross Dr. Oz and Sharecare have teamed up with the fine people from the American Red Cross in providing a comprehensive guide to assist you in the time of an emergency. The guide covers medical emergencies such as: Choking Broken bones Heart attack Stroke Allergic reactions In addition, if you are unsure exactly what the problem is, this guide can also help you figure it out. Of course the guide also states that nothing can replace assistance from trained medical emergency personnel, nurses, and doctors, but this guide can help as you wait for assistance. All of the protocols have been reviewed by the American Red Cross and also the American College of Emergency Physicians. First Aid — American Red Cross In a perfect world, no one would get hurt or become the victim of an accident. Unfortunately, this is not the case; scrapes, bumps, and bruises happen to us all. The First Aid application from the American Red Cross handles some of what life has to throw at us and how to deal with these minor injuries. This application is especially handy for those of us who have children, which seem to be in a constant state of some type of injury or illness during their younger years. First Aid — American Red Cross Please read the system requirements for this application. The app requires an SD card and 40 MB of free space on the card. Hurricane — American Red Cross We can all relate to the devastation of Katrina, Hugo, and other hurricanes that have whipped through many of the states. Losing all of your possessions, your home, or even your life is a high price to pay for not being prepared the best you can. Yes, I know that Katrina was a unstoppable force that no amount of preparedness could stop. But the warnings were in place and some people chose to ignore the warning signals being broadcast. The same thing happened in Joplin, MO where the sirens warned the residents some 20 minutes before the tornado struck. Hurricane — Red Cross Weather Map With the Hurricane app from the American Red Cross, you not only will be advised about how to prepare for a storm, but you can also track the storm. In addition: You can let your friends know you are OK with an ‘I’m Safe’ alert for Facebook, Twitter, email, or text. The app provides instructions for what to do when the power is out and the cell towers are down. The app tells you how to put together a hurricane toolkit with a flashlight, strobe light, and audible alerts. The app tells you how to assemble a first aid kit for emergencies. The app helps you have an emergency plan in place. It tells you if it a hurricane watch or hurricane warning and what the difference is. It even helps you know how to store food and water for emergencies. With these three free applications, you can protect yourself and your family during most emergency situations. Comments welcome.