AUSTIN – At the request of Gov. Greg Abbott, through the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM), approximately 700 members with the Texas Army and Air National Guards and Texas State Guard with the Texas Military Department have been activated and are pre-positioning throughout the state ahead of Hurricane Harvey and its anticipated landfall later this week.
“This is what we train for,” said Brig. Gen. Patrick M. Hamilton, Commander of Domestic Operations Task Force. “And we’re proud to stand beside our civilian partners, first responders and volunteers to serve the citizens of Texas.”
The Texas Military Department will continue to work with TDEM to project additional personnel and equipment requirements as needed based on the impact of Hurricane Harvey and the needs of the state. Hurricane Harvey is the first hurricane to make a direct landfall on the Texas coast since 2008.
“This is Texans helping Texans – neighbors helping neighbors,” Hamilton said. “While we don’t want to have to put our training to the test during a tragedy, our citizen-guardsmen remain prepared to help save lives and property, when called.”
Currently, UH-60 Blackhawk and UH-72 Lakota air crews remain prepositioned and on standby in Austin and San Antonio to assist with any emergency search and rescue, swift water rescues and/or emergency evacuations.
In addition, multiple Texas Army National ground transportation teams have been activated to support local and state agencies with any request for swift water rescues, high water ground transportation and personnel evacuation needs. They remain prepositioned in Victoria and College Station with other locations expected as the storm track becomes clearer.
Members of the Texas State Guard are mobilized to provide any local shelter operations and Electronic Tracking Network assistance in the affected counties.
Additional personnel remain on standby to respond to impacted areas as needed.