In the aftermath of the devastating tornado that cut a path of destruction
through Oklahoma City on Monday, wireless carrier AT&T announced that overage charges would be suspended for the area until June 30 as part of an effort to assist victims, many of whom lost everything. Due to high call volumes as friends and family check on their loved ones, the company said it would add additional resources to relieve cell congestion.
In the meantime, an AT&T spokesperson suggested using text messaging rather than voice to reach those they are concerned about in order to help reduce call traffic. The tornado, which was reported to be more than a mile wide, tore through suburbs of the city. The company reminded customers on its website that anyone can donate to the American Red Cross by texting "REDCROSS" to 90999, which will add a $10 donation to the customers' bill.
The storm is responsible for at least 91 fatalities thus far, and flattened whole neighborhoods in its wake. President Obama has already declared a major disaster and ordered federal aid for individuals and business owners, consisting of temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other assistance.