LAFD Responds to Hurricanes

September 30, 2017

On Saturday, August 26, 2017, CA-TF1 was called upon to deploy our team to Hurricane Harvey. The 75-member team was mobile by the early morning of August 27th. The unprecedented scale Harvey led to additional requests for help and by August, 29th, elements from ALL 28 FEMA Task Forces from across the country were deployed

Our team loaded more than 100,000 pounds of equipment in approximately 15 vehicles, three of which were 18 wheelers, and drove to Texas. After more than 30 hours of driving, developing contacts and situational awareness, the team went to work in the early morning of Tuesday, August 29, 2017.

They received a ‘rescue and evacuation’ mission for the Rosenberg area in Ft Bend county, one of the flooded communities in South East Texas. CA-TF1 members worked in concert with local Fire Departments, CA-TF4, AZ-TF1, TX-TF1 and the Texas National Guard to search flooded homes and extract victims and pets.

As of August 31st, the combination of the teams have successfully rescued 50 adults, 4 children and 12 animals. CA-TF1 alone rescued 23 adults, 3 children and 7 pets.

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Back at home in Chatsworth, Hilda Franco joined dozens of other volunteers at the Operation Gratitude warehouse to stuff care bags for first responders in Houston, knowing one of the bags might end up in her husband’s hands (Capt II Sergio Franco).

“Knowing that my husband is there, it makes me so proud and it makes me so worried at the same time,” Franco said. “I felt like ok, he’s out there doing something, I need to do something too. I felt like I had to do this, it’s one small part of what I can do to help.”

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