It only takes a second for a holiday trip to turn to tragedy. A moment of distraction at 60 mph can send an entire family to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.
Unfortunately, as highway travel and traffic accidents increase around holidays, blood donations drop sharply because regular donors are off traveling.
Faced with the extended Independence Day holiday and dwindling supplies, United Blood Services of Arizona is desperate for donations.
The agency has just 600 units of blood on hand 1,600 units less than agency officials think they'll need to help save lives around the state this holiday weekend.
United Blood Services supplies blood to 52 hospitals around the state and it needs 550 donors a day to meet expected demands for the next seven days.
Blood drives in the Rim country will be held from 12:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday, July 10 in the Pine Community Center and from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. July 10 and from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. July 11 in Payson at 302 S. Ash.
For more information about giving blood in the Rim country, call local United Blood Services representative Leslie Alexander at 476-3624.
More immediately, however, United Blood is asking all eligible residents 17 years of age or older to give blood. Potential donors must be in good health and weigh at least 110 pounds. It is important to bring identification, provide a list of any medications you take and eat a meal prior to giving blood.
Hours at United Blood Services' eight Valley donor centers have been extended to accommodate extra donors. Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments are strongly recommended to reduce long waits.
To make a donation appointment or find out more information about giving blood, call United Blood Services at (602) 431-9500.