EDISON, NJ – Three township firefighters went to Texas this week to aid storm victims there as part of the state’s Office of Emergency Management’s NJTF-1 Task Force.
According to officials, Capt. Joe Anselmo, Firefighter Allan Yourstone and Firefighter William Doherty are heading to Katy, Texas with other members of the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management’s task force to aid the victims of Hurricane Harvey, which has since become a tropical storm.
The task force left the joint military base at Fort Dix in Burlington County on Sunday and arrived in San Antonio yesterday, Aug. 29, according to the state’s OEM Facebook page.
Harvey plowed into Corpus Christi, Texas, as a category 4 hurricane during the weekend and quickly downgraded to a tropical storm.
It’s slow speed, however, brought double-digit rainfall to the Texas Gulf Coast, causing devastating flooding in Houston.
As of Monday, the storm’s center was located at 15 miles north-northeast of Port O’Connor, moving at just 3 m.p.h., according to the Texas Department of Emergency Management. Officials said it has sinced picked up speed, moving to nearby Louisiana.
Rainfall totals have exceeded anything seen before in the U.S., officials have said.
Officials said Monday that about 5,000 people are in shelters in and around Houston, and that number was expected to rise exponentially as the storm continued to batter the area.
Volunteers, like the New Jersey delegation, and donated supplies are going to the region to aid the people displaced by the storm and help with search and rescue efforts, officials said.
According to its mission statement, the New Jersey Task Force One is designed to help urban search and rescue efforts in a disaster area.