Supporting Local Disaster Relief Efforts in Garland, Texas

Supporting Local Disaster Relief Efforts in Garland, Texas

Tuesday, January 12, 2016 - 9:15am

CAMPAIGN: Atlas Copco: Empowering Our Communities

CONTENT: Article

The holiday season is typically a time to remember good fortune, an opportunity to take stock of blessings and a time spent gathering with loved ones. That’s why, when the temperature in Garland, Texas, neared 75 degrees Christmas day, all seemed well. But as forecasts called for temperatures to drop by as much as 30 degrees by the following day, meteorologists warned and residents knew that amount of atmospheric upheaval in such a short period of time meant big trouble.

Sure enough, as a wave of historic storms moved through the southern United States Christmas weekend, Texas and its neighboring states were not spared. The destruction was brutal. Tornados and torrential flooding killed dozens of people across several states. Thousands more were displaced, with homes destroyed or severely damaged, rendering them uninhabitable. Even more were left wondering why they were spared when neighbors and family members were not.

That’s why Atlas Copco Drilling Solutions in Garland pledged a donation of $10,000 to help aid local families who were affected by the storms. The donation will fund relief efforts by community partner Good Samaritans, where monies will be used to purchase necessary cleaning supplies for victims affected by the disaster.  The Joint Disaster Management Resource Center, located at the Granger Recreation Center in Garland, will serve as the routing hub for these crucial disaster-relief supplies.

Atlas Copco Drilling Solutions employs about 450 people at its Garland facility. One employee’s home was destroyed in the storm, and several other employees’ family members lost homes and personal property. Through the devastation, they all recognized they were fortunate to escape direct loss of life; even employees’ and their families’ pets were safe once the damage had been assessed.

Cleaning supplies – cleansers, mops, brooms and laundry detergent – were the primary need, as local residents whose homes were damaged but not destroyed scrambled to make quick work of the mess. Making sense of what happened will take much longer. Because of the impact these storms had on their community and their co-workers, Atlas Copco employees decided to also hold a supply drive from Jan. 7 through Jan. 15 to further their reach. The employee-initiated supply drive collected supplies and cash donations to supplement the company’s contributions. Contribution totals are still being tabulated.

Tornados are not the norm in Garland, a suburb of Dallas, but with a record number of destructive storms in 2015, residents are wondering if last year’s devastation is a new normal to which they have to be vigilant, though likely not accustomed.

With storm clean-up from taking months, and emotional scars requiring even more time to fade, Atlas Copco employees can take stock in knowing that this community is there for its members, especially when they need it the most.