8/19/2007 12:00 AM
More than 500 highly trained men, women, and K-9s from all across the state have checked in at Texas Task Force 1 Headquarters to report for stage one of deployment.
Texas Task Force 1 Director Bob McKee said during this stage teams and their members are streamlined before being mobilized to disaster areas.
"TEEX has responsibility for all search and rescue in the state of Texas in the State Emergency Plan," McKee said. "Within that we also have Texas Task Force 1, Texas Task Force 2, and then a number of other state agencies."
Those agencies include the Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife and the General Land Office.
"All come in and work in a unified command to response to a threat," McKee said.
The uncertainty of dean's fury is being met with a texas size response.
"This is by far the largest assembly of search and rescue personnel in the state of Texas in history," McKee said.
Check-in day was consumed with physicals, equipment inspections, and a number of briefings on the logistics of operations and communications that personnel will need to know to save lives and survive.
Texas A&M System Chancellor Michael McKinney said this is a great model of how independent governing agencies can come together for a common goal.
"The cooperation between the federal agencies, the state agencies, the local agencies Task Force 2 and Task Force 1, they work as a unit," McKinney said.
While Hurricane Dean's specific path has not been revealed, search and rescue personnel could move out to possible strike zones as soon as Monday.