Triad swift water rescue team sent to Houston

Tennessee is sending 91 trained search and rescue workers to southeastern Texas in response to Hurricane Harvey.

In a Twitter message, Pete Piringer, a spokesman for Montgomery County Fire and Rescue, said it is the first time since September 11, 2001, that all of the Federal Emergency Management Agency Urban Search and Rescue Teams have been deployed and activated at the same time.

The group is the latest from East Tennessee to volunteer to help in Texas. "In times of need there are no borders, we're all united as Americans to help those in danger".

The fourteen member team is part of Alabama Task Force One.

Kansas officials say they reached out to Texas offering the support.

Once it is able to access affected areas, VA-TF1's Swift Water team will provide additional resources and personnel to local authorities, who are in charge of all rescue and relief efforts.

The rescue team is being dispatched through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact at the request of the Texas Division of Emergency Management.

Chris Herrick, the deputy commissioner of the Vermont Department of Public Safety, said the Texas deployment is the first out-of-state mission for the team. "Please continue to pray for the people in the Houston and surrounding areas of Texas".

Ryan said Tuesday the team was initially diverted by federal authorities to San Antonio for staging until a decision could be made on where to send them. CO-TF1 has been deployed as a Type III team.

Mobile Fire spokesman, Steve Huffman, says the team has experience dealing with similar situations.

  • Jon Douglas