Indiana rescue task force assists with Texas flood relief


INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Members of Indiana’s Task Force One (INTF-1) made it to the disaster zone of Tropical Storm Harvey and are already in action.

Overnight Sunday into Monday, INTF-1 personnel assigned to the FEMA Incident Support Team advised several rescue operations throughout the night in the Houston area. According to Capt. Mike Pruitt, public information officer for the task force, there is still “no end in sight.”

Other members of INTF-1 are aiding with Haz-Mat support in the wake of growing flooding. Pruitt says the Indiana team had to move staging locations due to rising water levels.

Pruitt says the storms create a “vegetable soup” of everything one could imagine. Haz-Mat responders have to be decontaminated after operations and work in potentially very dangerous environments involving chemical spills, fuel spills and human waste.

Sunday evening, the 14-member water rescue team for INTF-1 departed Indiana equipped with six rescue boats and various emergency gear. Monday morning, the team made it to Texas, but Pruitt said they had a long drive ahead to their staging location.

The rest of the 84 person INTF-1 team is currently being prepped should FEMA place an additional request. For the time being, Pruitt says the situation remains fluid.