Thread: Relief Teams

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    Default Relief Teams

    Have any firefighters here been apart of any relief teams that have gone down south to help with the Katrina efforts?

    I am going with a team in the end of July to Mississippi so assist a department and was just looking for some feedback.

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    Which dept you going to? I was volunteering in southern MS for 3 months right after Katrina. I was in Hancock County. I assume you're going to West Hancock FD? Perlington (the town they are in) was obliterated, along with Waveland and Bay St Louis.
    Brad Stone, NREMT-Intermediate/ EMT-B Instructor

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    Default Check out this...

    http://www.stowefire.org/

    They have sent a few crews down...
    "If people concentrated on the really important things in life, there'd be a shortage of fishing poles."
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    Quote Originally Posted by bstone View Post
    Which dept you going to? I was volunteering in southern MS for 3 months right after Katrina. I was in Hancock County. I assume you're going to West Hancock FD? Perlington (the town they are in) was obliterated, along with Waveland and Bay St Louis.
    Yes, I am going to West hancock FD. Me and a crew of 7 are being sent down there. I hear not much has changed there 2 years later. What was it like while you were there?

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    Default Hancock Co Mississippi

    I was in Hancock Mississippi with a crew of 10 within a month of so of Katrina. I guess I am just curious to know what the conditions are like down there if they still need relief. I applaud you all for helping out as well.

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    Its still a mess down there and they are still requesting fire crews to help them. They actually have people coordinating deployments of fire depts that want to go down and help.

    Not to much has changed since the storm. There are still plenty of buildings and property that have been left untouched since Katrina. The drinking water and river and ocean water are still contaminated as well. It was a good experience and we went on some calls you would only see in the south, but they definetly are still in a great deal of need.

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    Do they want full timers or vollies? What types of calls are you responding to?

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    The relief teams that are going down are volunteering there time, but they are made up of career and volunteer FF's. Shifts/Duties depends on the team your with. We were on call 24/7 for a week. In the area I was in there were a lot of wrecks, fires, and QRS calls. The whole area doesn't run many false alarms, if any at all.

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    The 3 months I was in Waveland/Hancock County were the best and worst months of my live. I got to Waveland just a few days after the storm and the place looked absolutely devastated. There was not a building left standing that didn't look like it had been blown up with a large bomb. There were debris and rubble everything. On top of that, the heat was unbearable. It was SO SO hot. We were conducting our relief efforts out of the only place that would fit hundreds of people and wasn't under rubble- a black top parking lot. We were on Hwy 90 in the parking lot of Fred's Dept Store. The already 100 F and 100% humidity days were jacked up by another 10-20 degrees due to the radiating heat of the black top, but what were we supposed to do? The residents were relying on us for food, water and medical care. My friends were working with a small Church group to feed people (the numbers were as high as 5000 meals, three times a day) and the clinic was getting up to 100 patients a day.

    We were SO SO SO busy and didn't have even a moment to process what we were seeing.

    Thankfully, I was able to arrange for a steady stream of doctors and nurses to fly in for a week at a time. Pfizer donated a huge supply of free medicine which we gave to people who needed them (mostly diabetes and blood pressure medicines). We also gave out hundreds of gulcometer testing kits, including 200 free strips.

    Anonymous donors and individuals saved the day. All the people who volunteered at the relief center were regular people who took anywhere from a few days to a few months off from their lives to come and wash dishes, serve food, chop veggies and grill up food.

    I went back to Hancock Co last summer to volunteer. They had cleaned up almost all the rubble and a few small structures were being put up. I hope to go back again in a few months to volunteer.

    Waveland and Hancock Co are forever inscribed into my heart and soul. It was an honor to serve them.
    Last edited by bstone; 08-20-2007 at 06:24 PM.
    Brad Stone, NREMT-Intermediate/ EMT-B Instructor

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    Was anyone else deployed through fema to florida aroun oct 05.We were sent to florida went to training in atlanta and also orlando then went to broward county

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