Texas Task Force One activated

September 9, 2008 4:50:43 PM PDT
Search and rescue teams are on standby, ready to deploy for Ike. Governor Rick Perry activated Texas Task Force One ahead of the storm. TRACK IT: Location/forecast track | Satellite | Computer models | Watches/warnings | Hurr. wind probabilities | TS wind probabilities | Tracking map | Get Ike text alerts | Gulf water temps | Tim Heller's blog | Before the storm | Supply list | Photos

Teams arrived at their headquarters in College Station Tuesday.

They came from across the state with more than 280 personnel and 30 pieces of equipment. Boats, tractors and trucks were brought in just in case Hurricane Ike heads this way.

Texas Task Force One is given the enormous job of being ready, even if the storm heads somewhere else.

Captain Keith Bobbitt works for the Houston Fire Department. He has been through this drill before. He helped rescue victims during Hurricane Katrina.

He left Houston fully aware Ike could force him back.

"Of course, you don't want to see anything coming in your backyards, but we treat as if we were going to any other city in the state," he said.

This is the 13th deployment this year for Texas Task Force One and the fourth storm in just under two weeks.

Like all previous storms, knowing where to send the resources has been the toughest challenge.

"We need to put the search and rescue forces in the right place and until Hurricane Ike stabilizes, we just don't know yet," said Bob McKee, director of Texas task Force One.

Storm fatigue is also a concern. Crews are catching rest when they can, but for these first responders, it's a job they know has to be done.

"Ultimately were going to do what's best for the citizens of Texas and That's the way we usually do it," said Bobbitt.

Keep your family safe this hurricane season. Check our complete tropical weather preparation guide


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