City of Carrollton Responds to Hurricane Laura
The City of Carrollton worked with officials from other cities and organizations, as well as state and federal agencies during and after category 4 Hurricane Laura to assist with rescue efforts and aid evacuees. In response to Hurricane Laura, Carrollton Fire Rescue (CFR) Captains Richardson and Colleran were deployed as Rescue Specialists with Texas Task Force 2 as part of an Urban Search and Rescue Team. They were activated by the Texas Division of Emergency Management along with Texas Task Force 1 in preparation for the landfall of Hurricane Laura. As Rescue Specialists, their job is to access and remove victims who may become trapped due to collapsed structures or high-water conditions. The Task Force works in a squad with hazmat technicians, medical specialists, canine teams, and search specialists and as a team they locate, access, and then retrieve any victims who may need assistance. Their squads were comprised of fire department members from Dallas, Plano, Travis County, Haltom City, Richardson, Irving, Frisco, and Carrollton.
Task Force 2 was staged in Lumberton, Texas and their response area was north of Interstate 10 and east to the Louisiana border. After the hurricane made landfall, they were assigned to survey damage in Orange, Texas, checking collapsed structures for victims and documenting damage, blocked roads, and other items of importance for the Texas Division of Emergency Management and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Due to the eastward turn of the hurricane, they were fortunate to not have the flooding in Texas that was anticipated so they spent most of the week driving through Orange, Vidor, and Mauriceville tracking damage. Their Base of Operations for the majority of the event was Lumberton, Texas in a performing arts center provided by the Lumberton ISD. The team was relocated to Beaumont before being demobilized and sent home.
The North Texas Shelter Hub was activated by the State to assist with sheltering evacuees. Carrollton Emergency Management Coordinator Elliott Reep has been working alongside staff from the City of Farmers Branch to support the City of Richardson with shelter operations at two large hotels set up at the request of the Texas Department of Emergency Management. This is part of an agreement among the cities to support regional shelter operations. So far these shelters have provided a safe place to stay for over 700 guests and numerous pets. Shelter operations continued over the Labor Day weekend.
Evacuees seeking sheltering assistance should call 1-888-991-5229 and be prepared to provide documentation over the phone and upon arrival demonstrating residency in one of the affected Texas counties of Jasper, Jefferson, Newton, Orange, or Sabine or Louisiana parishes of Acadia, Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Grant, Jackson, Jefferson Davis, Lincoln, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Rapides, Sabine, Vermilion, Vernon, or Winn. Individuals from outside the impacted areas will not be eligible for sheltering assistance, but will be provided additional information on alternative resources by calling 2-1-1 for assistance. Additional information can be found on the Texas Hurricane Center webpage at http://www.gov.texas.gov/hurricane.
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