UPDATE 10/26/2015: Texas Task Force 1 demobilized on Sunday, Oct. 25, after the severe weather moved east out of the state. TX-TF1 Water Rescue Teams performed 43 water rescues in various locations over the weekend.
COLLEGE STATION – The Texas Division of Emergency Management has requested Texas Task Force 1 (TX-TF1) to have assets ready and to strategically position key resources across the state in preparation for potential heavy rainfall and possible flood conditions.
In partnership with Texas Military Forces, Texas Department of Transportation, Texas Department of Public Safety and others, TX-TF1 is providing eleven rescue swimmers for the Helicopter Search & Rescue Teams (HSART) and has seven water rescue boat squads comprised of Swiftwater Rescue personnel and equipment prepositioned along the I-35 corridor to respond to any requests for assistance from local jurisdictions. Additionally, three task force members are staffing the State Operations Center in support of the elevated activation level announced earlier today by Governor Greg Abbott.
These teams were deployed in many of the areas affected by the historic floods in May of this year. They regularly train together to be ready to provide swift and effective response when called upon.
Who is TX-TF1?
TX-TF1 is sponsored by the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) and has deployed over 90 times since 1997, including the Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy; Sept. 11th World Trade Center attack; the explosion in West, TX; Moore, OK, tornado; and Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Ike. TX-TF1 can be activated by the Texas Division of Emergency Management or as one of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) 28 sanctioned urban search and rescue teams.
Members of TX-TF1 range from firefighters and medical personnel, to structural engineers, and respond from jurisdictions within a 4-hour travel time from College Station. The Task Force consists of three separate teams of 70 members each, and these teams rotate on a monthly basis.