Butler County first responders head to Louisiana
HAMILTON, Ohio (WXIX) - The Butler County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Response Service Team and other first responders are on the way to Louisiana to join search and rescue efforts underway right now in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.
The team is going to Baton Rouge, where their primary job will be swift water rescue, said Captain Morgan Dallman.
He said it will take them 13 hours to get there, and they will stay for 16 days.
They packed emergency vehicles Sunday night and pulled out of the parking lot at sheriff’s headquarters in Hamilton by 8 a.m. Monday.
Their caravan includes eight vehicles to haul personnel and supplies, four boats, one side-by-side, a command trailer and an ERS truck.
Hurricane Ida slammed Louisiana with devastating force as a Category 4 just before noon Sunday. Homes are flooded, roofs ripped off buildings and residents are trapped in rising water in their homes, according to the latest media reports.
At least one person is reported dead, Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards announced in a tweet Sunday night.
More than one million customers are without power in Louisiana, according to poweroutage.us Another 113,840 are in the dark in Mississippi.
Ida was downgraded to a tropical storm early Monday, but winds are still 60 mph with continued threats of dangerous flash flooding, according to the National Weather Service.
Rescue teams from across the nation have responded.
Locally, Ohio Task Force 1 and some members of the Colerain Fire Department are already down there.
The deployment of the Butler County team will last 16 days.
The crew is made up of 20 officers and firefighters, both men and women, from Butler County.
The federal government is paying for the response, Sheriff Richard Jones said.
“Our training and service to the community reaches far beyond the borders of Butler County. If we are called up to assist other agencies in a time of crisis, we will answer that call without hesitation,” he said.
This hurricane hit on the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, a Category 3 that devastated parts of Louisiana and Mississippi.
The Butler County Sheriff’s Office responded to the aftermath then, too.
They left Sept. 1, 2005 with a caravan of four semi tractor-trailers hauling bottled water, personal hygiene and other items donated by the community.
They relieved exhausted deputies in Stone County, Mississippi.
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