Blood for gas

May 27, 2008 3:48:06 PM PDT
If you want free gas, the Red Cross says donate blood.

Bill Comly, of Chadds Ford, Pa., took an hour out of his day to donate. "I think I do it because I feel an obligation to give something back," he said.

But not everyone feels that obligation. Kristy Kane of the American Red Cross Penn-Jersey Region said typically during the summer the number of donors dwindles, but demand for life-saving blood goes up. "Anytime when people are driving, in the summer people are going to the Jersey shore, so there's going to be some car accidents there and we would need the blood then," she said.

So to entice more people to give, the Red Cross is offering the chance to get something back, free gas. Some drivers say the prize couldn't come at a better time as prices at the pump continue to soar. "It's just ridiculous," said Kyle Hannigan. "They're through the roof."

Here's how it works, if you give blood this summer, the day you donate, you'll be entered into that day's raffle. Every day, one lucky donor will win a $50 gas card. The chances of winning are one in 600 to 900 depending on the day.

But while some people welcome the promotion, others say it's a bit extreme. "I haven't donated blood yet and I'm not going to do it for gas," said Ed Cintron.

The Red Cross hopes people will come not only for the chance to win free gas, but also the chance to save up to three lives with one pint of blood. That's what Comly says will bring him back. "It's something everybody should do if they can," he said.

The promotion lasts until the end of September. To find a donation center near you, call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE or visit: www.pleasegiveblood.org

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