The Department of Defense (DoD) continues to provide disaster response resources and capabilities as requested by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other federal agencies in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
Given the size and scope of the storm and its continuing impact throughout the eastern and northeastern United States, the department is actively posturing forces to support civil authorities via U.S. Northern Command and the National Guard Bureau, with a particular emphasis on un-watering and energy restoration.
Here is today’s DoD and National Guard operations update (as of 3 p.m. EDT.)
Today, DoD is focused on providing recovery support as requested by FEMA in coordination with federal, state and local partners with a single set of objectives — saving lives, providing shelter, and helping restore communities.
Approximately 10,000 Army and Air National Guard forces are on duty supporting the governors in 13 eastern seaboard states (Connecticut; Delaware; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New York; North Carolina; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Virginia and West Virginia). Dual status commanders have been approved for six states (Maryland; Massachusetts; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New York and Rhode Island).
The National Guard is working closely with state emergency response planners and providing input where necessary to identify and fill capability gaps.
Guard forces under state control are assembling and staging personnel, providing communications, shelter and engineer support, evacuation and security support, high water vehicle support, high water search and rescue, debris removal and transportation. National Guard civil support teams are on stand-by for hazardous material (HAZMAT) response and providing Joint Incident Site Communications Capability bridge between first responders and other local, state, and federal agencies. In West Virginia, the National Guard is patrolling Interstate 68 for stranded motorists and assisting the power company with generators.
– Based on a request from the Department of Health and Human Services, DoD’s U.S. Transportation Command airlifted approximately 120 medical personnel to New York City to augment medical staff providing care to nursing homes and at-risk elderly patients. Aircraft are on standby to support further missions in response to Hurricane Sandy. Medical personnel are being brought in from Colorado, Ohio, and Texas.
– The Defense Logistics Agency is providing fuel, fuel transportation, commodities, and expeditionary teams to support FEMA and the Department of Energy.
Updates on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers‘ (USACE) response to Hurricane Sandy:
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is prepared and ready to respond to natural and human-made disasters and overseas contingencies. When disasters occur, USACE teams and other resources are mobilized from across the country to assist our local districts and offices to deliver our response missions.
– To date, USACE has received 25 mission assignments from FEMA, with more than 400 people engaged to support the response mission.
– USACE’s priority is support to the New York City un-watering mission. They have deployed technical assistance, senior leadership oversight, and are working to identify and deploy 100 high volume water pumps consistent with FEMA mission assignments. USACE is delivering these pumps to New York FEMA Mobilization centers. This is in addition to the 100 water pumps U.S. Northern Command is currently sourcing at FEMA’s request.
– USACE is supporting states’ and FEMA Regions I, II and III operations centers to organize response efforts. More than 20 team leaders or assistant team leaders have been alerted and/or deployed to provide public works and engineering expertise to include damage modeling, storm surge modeling, and coastal preparations.
– Other planning response teams remain on alert for debris management, commodities distribution, infrastructure assessment, temporary roofing, critical public facilities, water planning, and temporary housing. Additional temporary power teams have also been placed on alert status.
– USACE senior leaders, power response teams, 249th Engineer Battalion Technical Assistance personnel and other technical experts are on scene at various locations providing assistance.
– USACE is supporting emergency temporary power mission in New York / New Jersey. USACE has staged 200 generators at four locations in order to provide capacity beyond state’s capabilities. They will be deployed by FEMA as they are needed.
– Today, the USACE is shipping 25 pumps from New Orleans.
– USACE is also meeting with other private pump suppliers to determine availability and capacity of pumps that could be delivered to New York area.
– USACE has received a Temporary Power mission assignment from FEMA and has deployed temporary emergency power assets (four planning and response teams, the 249th Engineer Battalion, six emergency command and control vehicles/deployable tactical operating systems, one mobile command vehicle) to provide support to areas impacted by post-tropical storm Sandy.
– USACE has received a mission assignment from FEMA to provide 80 truckloads of water to West Virginia.
– USACE Operations Centers within the affected districts have been activated and emergency response assets are providing support 24/7.
– USACE has assigned a liaison to the Department of Energy and to the National Guard Bureau to coordinate any combined response actions.