NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Volunteer State lived up to its name when roughly 30 first responders were deployed for Louisiana on Thursday.
Crews will help with swift-water rescues, search and rescues, and communications in the aftermath of Hurricane Laura.
“These men and women will deploy there using their boats, using their skills they’ve built on how to do search grids and using the technology that’s available to make sure they try to find anybody that might not have gotten out and evacuated and try to save their lives,” said TEMA Director Patrick Sheehan.
The Tennessee Task Force 2 deployment came at the request of FEMA as part of the Emergency Management Assistance Compact. The crew met at Nissan Stadium Thursday morning where they were all administered Rapid COVID-19 tests before leaving.
“This is what first responders do and I think the one thing this country needs right now is a show of brotherly love and compassion and as first responders that’s exactly what we do. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, If you’re a citizen or a resident, there is a call for a need and it’s our job to go render that care that’s needed,” said NFD Director Chief William Swann.
Crews included members from the Nashville Fire Department, Metro Public Works, Hendersonville Fire, Williamson County Communications, Brentwood Fire Department, Franklin Fire Department and Murfreesboro Fire Department.
“These are not only our counterparts that we’re going to but they’re our friends and these are the folks in Louisiana, we’ve deployed with them to Florida, to Texas, South Carolina, so they’ve always came and helped when others needed help so now it’s our time to go help our brothers and sisters in Louisiana,” said Glenn Johnson, Interim Fire Chief in Franklin.
These first responders are no strangers to natural disasters.
“These men and women are first responders across middle Tennessee and I would venture to say almost all of them played a role in helping to respond in that initial part of the recovery after March and April tornados that occurred in different parts of the state so these are the men and women you want coming to help you. They’re experienced. They’re motivated. They want to help,” said Sheehan.
The current deployment is for two weeks but could change depending on the need.