Missouri search and rescue team sends experts ahead of hurricane's landfall

September 13, 2018 - 6:06 am

Among the professionals offering assistance during Hurricane Florence is Missouri Task Force One. 

The team is considered the best of the best; one of 28 Urban Search and Rescue Teams in the country. Missouri Task Force One is made up of some 210 men and women. There are 47 members assigned to this deployment.

All storms present some level of hazard, said Gale Blomenkamp, task force head and Assistant Chief at the Boone County Fire Protection District.

"What we really hope people do is they take the local authorities' suggestion to evacuate, or manditory evacuation," Blomenkamp said. "That really allows us to not face as many dangers; if people will get out of the storm's way and we don't have to do the forced rescues, that just makes everything better."

 Deployments usually last 10 to 14 days, Bomenkamp said. The group's first deployment was after 9/11. The team typically responds to hurricanes. 

A team recently returned from Hawaii, where they provided services in response to Hurricane Lane, which struck the islands in August. 

The Boone County Fire Protection District is easy to follow on Facebook and Twitter.

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