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97 People Donate to Newport Lifeguards' Blood Drive

The Newport Beach Fire Department is asking for more blood donations.

Ninety-seven donors rolled up their sleeves and donated blood at the 27th annual Newport Beach Lifeguards’ Blood Drive last week at the Newport Pier, but officials say they hoped for more donations.

Jennifer Schulz, spokeswoman for the Newport Beach Fire Department, said 79 units of blood were collected from the donors, which was less than the blood collected during its first drive.

"This was down slightly from the 86 donations at the Lifeguard Summer Kick-off drive in late June," Schulz said. "It will be very close this year, but Newport Beach Lifeguards hope to bring the Southern California Lifeguard Blood Drive Challenge Trophy to Newport for the fifth consecutive year."

The Newport Beach Ocean Lifeguard Association provided donors with hamburgers, hot dogs, and Klondike ice cream bars at the blood drive. Blood collected from the drive is used daily to treat patients undergoing surgery, those with cancer, burn patients, auto accident patients and many more. Blood donations cannot be stockpiled, with the shelf life ranging from a few hours for some cells to 42 days for others. Blood donations must be made on a regular basis in order to maintain an adequate supply in the community.

Anyone interested in donating blood can visit givelife.org to schedule an appointment with the American Red Cross.

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