GAUTIER, Miss. (WLOX) - Gautier Rotary Club partnered with Gautier’s Police Department, Fire Department, and Mississippi Highway Patrol to host Battle of the Badges Blood Drive.
Organizers said that goal of the drive is to help those in need of blood, as well as inform others about driving safely.
We’re told donors are encouraged to give a pint of blood to save up to three lives.
Directors said blood donations will be checked for COVID-19 antibodies.
Gautier Rotary Club president Rico Borrazzo said that the organization is determined to reach its goal.
“It’s a good action to bring blood to our community. Today we hope to have 120 pints of blood,” Borrozzo said. “We have to reach out to the community with a service of our self. We have to see where the issues are to help our folks.”
Mississippi Highway Patrol provided a roll-over simulator to demonstrate what could happen in a car crash when one isn’t wearing a seatbelt.
Mississippi Highway Patrol Maj. Johnny Poulos said that the fatality rate in teen car crashes is what made troopers bring the roll-over simulator to the event.
“We all have to be buckled up. Unfortunately, in 2019 we had 49 teenagers who lost their lives on the roadways of Mississippi. In 2020, we had 72, and those numbers are just unacceptable,” Poulos said. “We’re taking it around the state to not only show teenagers safe driving but parents as well. We all need to pitch in and set an example when it comes to safe driving.”
Borrazzo explained that the high number of car crashes and the need for blood go hand and hand.
“They rush them to the hospital. If they don’t have enough blood, then what’s the point? So, the blood ties together with the accidents, the accidents tie together with the need of blood, and we have to be ready to serve the community. That’s what we’re trying to do, we’re trying to fill in that gap,” Borrazzo said.
Borrazzo said that Gautier Rotary Club plans to do four more blood drives throughout the rest of the year.