National Guard activates 8,000 to assist in Irma recovery

Maj. Gen. Michael Calhoun, the Adjutant General of Florida, told local Historic City News reporters that there are currently more than 8,000 Soldiers and Airmen conducting search and rescue operations, supply distribution points, and shelter management operations throughout the state in support of local and state agencies recovering from Hurricane Irma.

The Florida National Guard has more than 11,000 Guardsmen from other states who are also assisting with recovery operations throughout our state.

“We’re extremely proud of the Guardsmen and active forces from across the country who are working now to save lives, prevent injuries, and protect property,” General Calhoun told Historic City News this morning. “We are well-equipped, with assets including high water vehicles, helicopters, boats, generators and more.”

Florida National Guard Soldiers and Airmen are helping at more than 250 shelters statewide, and will continue to assist however needed and requested by the counties.

“The next days and weeks will no doubt be trying and exhausting as we begin to rebuild. But no matter what this storm has brought, know that you are not alone,” said Calhoun. “Response to Hurricane Irma has been a massive team effort, and we are proud to be working closely with our civilian partner agencies, National Guard units from other states, and active-duty counterparts.”

Calhoun explained that the Guard has established Points of Distribution throughout the state, and that they are operating at the State Logistics Readiness Center in Orlando as well as Logistics Staging Areas to ensure that they are able to get supplies quickly to those who need them.

“We are aware of the critical situation in the Florida Keys, and continue to coordinate multi-service operations,” General Calhoun added. “Our Soldiers and Airmen are providing critical capabilities to include road and runway clearance to enable the delivery of life-saving supplies.”

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