COLLEGE STATION – The State of California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) has requested Canine Human Remains Detection Search Teams via the National Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC). The Texas Division of Emergency Management responded to this request for additional search resources and notified Texas A&M Task Force 1 (TX-TF1) of the pending deployment over the weekend.
On Monday, Nov. 26, TX-TF1 rostered and deployed a Canine Search Mission Ready Package (MRP) to fill this request. This 6-person and 2-canine MRP will directly support Law Enforcement officials of Butte County, Calif., in their continued search of the occupied areas that were devastated by the Camp Fire, to include the cities of Paradise, Magalia, and Concow, among many others. The 6-person TX-TF1 Canine Search MRP is expected to be deployed in support of Cal OES for up to 14 days, before returning home to Texas.
While the Camp Fire has been reported as 100% contained as of Sunday, Nov. 25, there are still a number of missing persons that Cal OES and Butte County officials are actively searching for in the wake of this significant fire event. The TX-TF1 MRP, along with other EMAC Canine Search MRPs from across the country, will assist California State and County officials with the use of highly trained canines in the search and recovery of those people that perished in this event.
A Canine Search MRP is a resource that conducts search and location operations for human remains using specially trained disaster canines. This MRP includes two canine search teams, each team consists of one certified disaster canine and one certified handler. A Canine Search MRP can operate for 12-hour periods in support of the search and location operations.
About Texas A&M Task Force 1
Texas A&M Task Force 1 (TX-TF1) is sponsored by the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) and is headquartered in College Station, Texas. TX-TF1 functions as one of the 28 federal teams under the Federal Emergency Management Agency National Urban Search and Rescue System and as a statewide urban search and rescue team under direction of the Texas Division of Emergency Management. TX-TF1 also coordinates the State’s urban search and rescue program, as well as the State’s swiftwater rescue program and the helicopter search and rescue team, which works in conjunction with the Texas Military Department.