Can YOU help? Summer is tough when it comes to blood donations & BloodCenter of Wisconsin has had some setbacks

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Summer can be tough on the BloodCenter of Wisconsin. There is a higher need for blood -- coupled with a lower number of donors.

“We're very active. We do sports, we're on our boats, we're on our motorcycles, and unfortunately things happen,” said Sharon Staley-Smith, Manager of Operations for Donor Services at the BloodCenter of Wisconsin.

Inside the downtown location, it was pretty empty on Thursday morning, July 3rd.

BloodCenter of Wisconsin employees and volunteers say that's not uncommon during a holiday weekend, when typically, people are busy.

“When the weather gets really nice and we're spending all of our time out with friends and family, I think we definitely forget our patients still need blood,” said Staley-Smith.

“I think too many people are traveling,” said Kenneth Konet, a regular blood donor.

BloodCenter of Wisconsin officials say what adds to the challenge is the fact that they are already behind.

On Wednesday, July 2nd, they had to close the doors to their downtown donation center when crews working on a nearby water main break shut off their water.

“You're looking at 30 to 40 donations you might have lost, so it is significant,” said Staley-Smith.

The location downtown is a smaller location compared to the one in Waukesha, which was also closed for two days this week because of a power outage caused by Monday's storms.

“That really impacted our collections,” said Staley-Smith.

So now they are asking for all the help they can get, for both blood and platelets.

“It’s just been quite the week of impact because of natural causes and we need to make that up,” said Staley-Smith.

The location downtown has re-opened.

They are looking especially for O-negative blood and platelets, but say every little bit helps.

If you'd like to make a donation -- you can call the BloodCenter of Wisconsin at 1-877-BE-A-HERO.

You can also make an appointment online via the BloodCenter of Wisconsin's website. Just CLICK HERE.