MIAMI-DADE, Florida (CBS) – Rescue teams from South Florida answered the call for help after unprecedented flooding in Texas as a result of slow-moving Tropical Storm Harvey.
Miami Fire Rescue firefighters loaded equipment into trucks Sunday, evening for the long drive to Texas.
Twenty members of the department are heading to Texas to help with ongoing search-and-rescue efforts after receiving activation orders from FEMA. They’re part of the Urban Search and Rescue Task Force, two highly trained groups that deal with hazardous materials as well as water rescue.
The team is bringing specialized boats, all-terrain vehicles and other heavy equipment to the Texas’ Gulf Coast, which was ravaged by relentless rains and catastrophic flooding.
The only thing the team members know is that they will eventually end up in Houston.
Miami Fire Rescue is not the only South Florida agency heading to Texas to lend a helping hand. Miami-Dade Fire Rescue’s task force also hit the road early Sunday morning (08/27).
Forty-five firefighters, paramedics, doctors and engineers make up the team.
Battalion Chief Andy Alvarez said they have no idea what they will encounter.
Each of the South Florida task forces took enough food and water to stay self-sufficient for days. The Miami Fire Rescue crew said they are prepared to remain in Texas for at least two weeks.
In the days ahead, these first responders will have to be ready for any crisis that comes their way.