10/29/2009 12:00 AM
COLLEGE STATION - Texas Task Force 1 (TX-TF1) will deploy today in advance of continued heavy rain expected across east Texas over the next two days. This deployment is part of the State’s effort to preposition and assist jurisdictions if conditions deteriorate. Six swiftwater rescue teams will be placed on alert, along with helicopter rescue technicians. These technicians will be located with Texas Military Forces UH-60 helicopters in Austin and San Antonio.
The National Weather Service predicts the possibility of heavy rain over much of Southeast Texas stretching east of Interstate 45 corridor from Houston to Dallas. The helicopter rescue technicians and swiftwater rescue teams will support requests by local jurisdictions should they experience flash flooding. In addition to these specialized rescue teams, four TX-TF1 Liaison Officers will be deployed to cities in Southeast Texas to assist and be available to advise local jurisdictions on matters of search and rescue as required.
The Texas Military Forces UH-60 helicopters are equipped with special hoists and carry specialized water rescue equipment to be utilized by the TX-TF1 members. TX-TF1 rescue specialists have been conducting joint training with the Texas Military Forces over the summer in preparation for such an event.
Texans are reminded to monitor local media or NOAA Weather Radio during severe weather events for any statements and/or warnings issued by the National Weather Service.
Flash Flood Facts
As little as six inches of water moving over a roadway can begin to move your car. Swiftwater has a different effect on vehicles than standing water. Twelve to 24 inches of swiftwater can sweep away any type of vehicle, even a large truck or SUV.
About Texas Task Force 1
Texas Task Force 1 is sponsored by the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) and is comprised of more than 450 personnel representing more than 60 jurisdictions and agencies from across the state of Texas, and is one of 28 teams in the FEMA national urban search and rescue system. Texas Task Force 1 and TEEX coordinate statewide requests for search and rescue.
About the Texas Engineering Extension Service
TEEX, a member of The Texas A&M University System, offers hands-on, customized, first-responder training, homeland security exercises, technical assistance and technology transfer services impacting Texas and beyond. TEEX programs include fire services, homeland security, law enforcement, public works, safety and health, search and rescue, and economic development.