Michael Webster
HARVEY DISASTER: We desperately need more volunteers
By Michael Webster
August 30, 2017



USCDA needs volunteers. Call 949-697-5676 or e-mail to: mvwsr@aol.com

All USCDA members, report to the Emergency Operation Center (EOC) or county Sheriff. Your mission is to follow Incident Commander requests. Report that USCDA Team members have expertise in the following areas:

  • To provide disaster relief to those in need.
  • Provide search and rescue operations as requested.
  • If requested, go door to door warning residents to evacuate.
  • And follow any other instructions.

    All USCDA volunteers are encouraged to respond to Southeast Texas, and western Louisiana. This includes all volunteers. USCDA volunteers, report to the Emergency Operation Center (EOC) upon your arrival in the area you select, or report to the County Sheriff, or to any law enforcement officer or any uniformed fire fighter in that area. Point out that you are a volunteer for USCDA and offer your expertise and training and volunteer your services. New volunteers, please e-mail your contact information to mvwsr@aol.com. Please include what resources you will be providing and how soon you can independently respond. At the end of each day, please send a daily report of your activities to: mvwsr@aol.com, to help us keep track of our volunteers and their activities.

    Immediately what's needed at disaster locations:

    Lifted trucks & SUV's, airboats, flat bottom boats, jet skis, ice and water, blankets and freeze dried foods.

    Report to Incident Command facility or Emergency Operations Center (EOC)

    Download and cut out above orders. Present to Incident Command with your experience and training.

    Cut here ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Please forward this alert to your friends, family, face book and twitter.

    Attn: USCDA Members
    From: USCDA Headquarters

    You are receiving this information as a member of the United States Civil Defense Assoc.(USCDA) to update you on the HARVEY disaster and is being sent to you as a benefit of membership.


    USCDA official advisory coming in:


    More than 200 USCDA members have shown up to volunteer, including many boats and jet skis, food and water. USCDA is in need of ICE. USCDA is working with the Sheriff's office along with more than 15,400 employees from more than 17 federal departments and agencies are working together in support of the ongoing response to damage resulting from Hurricane Harvey and subsequent flooding across Texas and Louisiana.

    Integrated federal, state, and local search and rescue teams are working together around the clock, aligning the right skills with the search and rescue needs to reach those stranded in flooded areas.

    FEMA has more than 18,100 Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) personnel working to save lives in southeast Texas, conducting rescues for more than 2,500 survivors. The United States Coast Guard (USCG) is using shallow-draft vessels to provide search and rescue assistance in flooded areas, and aircrews to conduct damage assessment overflights and search and rescue patrols. USCG has conducted rescues for more than 4,200 survivors and over 1,000 pets.

    Additional surge boat resources are deployed to Texas from Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Department of the Interior (DOI).

    More than 3,200 FEMA employees are working in support of Tropical Storm Harvey response.

    This disaster footprint includes:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

    Residents and business owners in designated counties who sustained disaster-related damage due to Tropical Storm Harvey, and are able to do so, can apply for assistance by registering online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov

    Registering online is the quickest way to register for FEMA assistance since the event will last several days and the full scope of damages may not be evident until the storm has passed. If you do not have access to the internet, you may register by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY). If you use 711 relay or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362 directly. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.

    As of this morning, more than 65,000 individuals and households have been approved for FEMA assistance.

    Urban Search & Rescue task forces with the National Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) System are on the ground in the Houston/Galveston area in Texas to support state and local rescue efforts. Each of these teams has swift water rescue capabilities, and additional teams are on alert.

    Six Type 1 Task Forces conducting operations in Houston and the surrounding areas

    Eight Type 3 Task Forces conducting operations in Houston and the surrounding areas

    Seven Hazardous Equipment Push Packages teams in San Antonio, Texas, to provide support for handling hazardous materials

    14 Swiftwater Mission Ready Packages

    One Incident Support Team in College Station

    FEMA and the U.S. Department of Defense established Incident Support Bases (ISB) near Seguin, Texas; Camp Beauregard, Louisiana; and Fort Hood, Texas, to ensure supplies including water, meals, blankets and other resources are closer to affected areas and are available for distribution to state, tribal, and local officials. State, local, and tribal officials are responsible for distributing supplies to the community.

    As of this morning, the following commodities have been provided to the state of Texas at its request:

    More than 306,000 meals

    More than 687,000 liters of water

    More than 4.6 million meals, 5.1 million liters of water, and thousands of cots and blankets remain available at ISBs for transfer to the states of Texas and Louisiana, should they be needed and requested. Additional commodities are in route to the ISBs.

    Mobile Emergency Response Support (MERS) personnel and equipment are on the ground in Texas and Louisiana to support the states with secure and non-secure voice, video, and information services for emergency response communications needs.

    FEMA Incident Management Assistance Teams are in place in Houston and the Texas and Louisiana state emergency operations centers in Austin, Texas, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to support requests for federal assistance. Additional teams continue to deploy as the response continues.

    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

    HHS has more than 500 personnel on the ground in Texas and Louisiana, 1,000 more on alert and approximately 53,000 pounds of medical equipment and supplies deployed to support medical and public health needs in the affected areas.

    HHS has activated the AABB Blood Disaster Task Force for Hurricane Harvey in order to evaluate the need for nationwide blood donations to replenish cancelled blood drives in the impacted area.

    An EMS contract managed by HHS has been utilized to evacuate 182 patients via 70 ambulances from three hospitals in Victoria, Texas.

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

    EPA activated the National Incident Management Team consisting of highly skilled response personnel from Regions 3, 4, and 5. The N-IMAT arrived in Dallas this morning to assist with response activities.

    EPA deployed 10 personnel to assist the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) with their Drinking Water and Waste Water Phone Bank located in Austin, Texas.

    An Incident Management Team is integrating with TCEQ and the Texas General Land Office and is deploying for Corpus Christi, Texas.

    EPA has two On-Scene Coordinators deployed – one at FEMA in Denton and another at the State Operation Center in Austin. EPA is working with TCEQ to contact industrial sources within the impacted area to determine their operational status and determine what support can be provided with the monitoring of the start-up of industrial sources along the coastal area of Texas.

    EPA is mobilizing additional personnel to Austin to support the state in this effort. EPA Remedial Managers have initiated follow-up activities at the 31 Superfund NPL sites within the storm path to conduct rapid damage assessments and determine if additional emergency cleanup activities are necessary.

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)

    The USACE Prime Power Planning and Response Team along with soldiers from the 249th Engineer Battalion are conducting assessments and installing generators. Liaison Officers are assisting the state emergency operations centers and team leaders are providing technical assistance to FEMA response nodes.

    A Temporary Housing subject matter expert is embedded with FEMA Region VI providing assistance and oversight for housing needs. Debris SMEs are providing technical assistance to Texas with its debris removal plan.

    USACE is closely coordinating with the Coast Guard on the plan to clear and open the federal navigation channels once weather permits. USACE is surveying portions of the Texas Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GIWW) in the Corpus Christi area. USACE and the Coast Guard are working with industry and owners to remove all obstructions that are impacting the GIWW.

    USACE Districts in affected areas are conducting flood-fighting activities such as stockpiling and issuing flood-fighting materials (sandbags and materials/fabrics that keep soil in place) to local government entities.

    In an effort to mitigate the effects of flooding in the area, USACE Districts are monitoring flood risk reduction projects, and these projects are performing as designed.

    USACE is conducting releases from the Addicks and Barker Dams in Houston, Texas, releasing less than 10 percent of the inflow, to most effectively manage risk. Releasing smaller amounts of water from the dams, now, decreases the amount of water that eventually flows through emergency spillways around the dams. USACE personnel are on-site at the dams conducting 24 hour monitoring and assessment operations

    The American Red Cross (ARC)

    ARC is partnering with the United States Coast Guard and the Texas National Guard to move supplies and volunteers to where they are needed most. Our first priority is keeping people safe while providing shelter, food, and a shoulder to lean on.

    Preliminary estimates indicate more than 22,000 people sought refuge in more than 235 shelters across Texas and Louisiana Tuesday night. This includes more than 8,000 evacuees at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston.

    Almost 1,000 volunteers are on the ground and more are on the way. They will be joined by a group of highly-skilled volunteers from the Mexican Red Cross who will help support shelters, distribute aid, and connect with Spanish speaking disaster survivors to keep them informed about support available to them.

    ARC and their partners have served nearly 30,000 meals and snacks since the storm began.

    More than 80 tractor-trailer loads of cots, blankets, ready-to-eat meals, comfort kits, kitchen supplies, and cleaning supplies are now on the ground. This includes supplies to support 6 kitchens, each able to produce 10,000 meals a day. About 73,000 ready-to-eat meals are currently on the ground with an additional 43,000 enroute.

    More than half of the ARC emergency response fleet – 200 Emergency Response Vehicles – have been activated for the operation.

    The Red Cross prepositioned additional blood products in Houston ahead of the storm to help ensure an adequate blood supply would be available for hospital patients. We also staged more blood product inventory in Dallas. We are closely working with local and federal authorities to continue the distribution of blood products to our hospital partners.

    More than 14 million hurricane and flood alerts have been issued through Red Cross mobile apps since Thursday. Alerts provide people with real-time information so they can help protect themselves and their loved ones.

    The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS)

    CNCS deployed more than 250 AmeriCorps members to the region to support American Red Cross shelter and feeding operations, and FEMA's disaster damage assessments and logistics. AmeriCorps members are also working to stand up a Volunteer Reception Center. Additional requests for AmeriCorps disaster response teams are in development. These teams are trained to provide expert manpower for shelter operations, debris removal, and volunteer and donations management.

    Department of Energy (DOE)

    DOE responders remain active at its sites in Washington D.C. and Texas. DOE is continuing to assess the situation, impact, and needs in affected areas, and is continuing to provide situation reports at https://www.energy.gov/oe/downloads/hurricane-harvey-situation-reports-august-2017. The electric industry has reported that industry mutual assistance crews from at least 19 states are responding, including nearly 10,000 workers dedicated to the response and recovery effort.

    Department of Defense (DoD)

    Defense Logistics Agency is providing 450,000 gallons of diesel and 50,000 gallons of motor gas expected to arrive at Fort Hood on Wednesday, Aug 30.

    On Aug 28, DoD conducted 13 Search and Rescue missions and rescued 227 personnel using Navy and Air Force helicopters.

    DoD deployed a Title-10 Deputy and support staff for the Dual Status Command, led by Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Patrick Hamilton, in Austin, Texas, on Aug 28.

    One hundred Medium Tactical Vehicles are currently en route to Katy, Texas, from Fort Hood to provide personnel and patient transportation out of flooded areas in Houston.

    National Guard Bureau (NGB)

    All 12,000 Texas military NGB members are activated for hurricane relief, assisting with response efforts, including evacuation and search/rescue efforts.

    NGB evacuated 725 people and rescued 3,801 along with 308 animals evacuated or rescued.

    The Department of the Interior (DOI)

    DOI has 97 personnel on FEMA Mission Assignments and hundreds more personnel involved in response and recovery at national wildlife refuges, parks, and other Interior sites.

    The National Park Service and other Interior agencies are mobilizing three dozen boats and teams for search and rescue, some of which will be on-site today.

    The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA)

    BIA is leading the Tribal Assistance Coordinating Group in helping tribes in need of emergency help, including the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas, the Tunica-Biloxi Indian Tribe of Louisiana, and the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana.

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

    USGS is performing high-water mark flagging and surveying and developing inundation mapping once flood waters begin to recede. The USGS has 32 employees deployed to provide discharge measurements and repair gauges when areas become accessible – many are currently dangerous.

    A big thank you to all of our volunteers. Feel free to contact HQ for information on how to volunteer.

    Best regards,

    General Michael Webster

    United States Civil Defense Association 301 Forest Ave, Laguna Beach, California 92651
    e-mail mvwsr@aol.com
    Website www.uscda.us

    Ph. 949-697-5676

    © Michael Webster


    The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
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    Michael Webster

    Michael Webster's Syndicated Investigative Reports are read worldwide, in 100 or more U.S. outlets and in at least 136 countries and territories. He publishes articles in association with global news agencies and media information services with more than 350 news affiliates in 136 countries... (more)


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