LAFAYETTE, La. — The Ohio Task Force 1, one of the top Urban Search and Rescue Teams in the nation, arrived in Lafayette, Louisiana Saturday to prepare for the rescue and recovery efforts during and after Hurricane Ida's landfall.
Ida made landfall near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, as an “extremely dangerous” Category 4 storm at 12:55 p.m. ET, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Ohio Task Force 1 is staged in Louisiana, riding out the storm and waiting to move into action when the unit is requested.
"The team arrived safe and sound and immediately went to work to be fully prepared to assist the people of Louisiana as the need arises," said public information officer Phil Sinewe in a press release. "Ida has all indication of being a powerful storm; this is the type of rescue work the team trains for year-round. Our team has a very capable water rescue team, medical specialists, structural specialists, and very experienced canine search teams. Ohio should be proud of the contingent we are injecting into this rescue effort.”
As of 11 a.m. Sunday, the Federal Emergency Management Agency had activated six Type 1 urban search and rescue units and nine Type 3 units in the area, all of which have search and rescue, medical and water rescue capabilities, as well a canine search teams.
Ahead of the storm, Gov. Bel Edwards said Ida would be one of the strongest storms to hit Louisiana since at least the 1850s.
Officials have said Ida will produce heavy rainfall Sunday through Monday across the central Gulf Coast from southeastern Louisiana, coastal Mississippi, to far southwestern Alabama, resulting in considerable to life-threatening flash and urban flooding and significant river flooding.
The Ohio Task Force 1 has been deployed for many major events, including recently assisting in the rescue efforts at a condominium collapse in Surfside, Florida in June.
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