Indiana Task Force 1 deploys to Florida ahead of Hurricane Dorian’s arrival

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – With 80 people and $7.5 million worth of equipment in tow, Indiana Task Force 1 hit the road around 7:30 p.m. on Friday with plans of helping people in Hurricane Dorian's path.

This is something the people with Task Force 1 train for monthly, some of them bi-weekly.

"It gets a little dangerous," Tom Neal, Task Force 1's Program Manager, said of his experience in natural disasters. "We may be actively working during the height of the storm."

Task Force 1 is a federal search and rescue crew from the central region. Twenty-nine agencies make up the team which includes firefighters, doctors, nurses and structural engineers, among others.

"We all come together and work for a common cause and that's the people of this country," Neal said.

This is Tara Underwood's first time heading into a hurricane. She's been a nurse for years and is excited to help people in the storm's path. She said training beside the rest of the team should give everyone comfort.

"The people here are really top of the line at what they've done," Underwood said.

The crew is driving overnight, headed for south Florida. However, they will check in with FEMA every couple of hours. Depending on the storm's path, the destination could change.

Task Force 1 is traveling with semi-trucks full of special equipment, along with search and rescue boats and technical search and rescue equipment.

"So that they can listen to heartbeats through concrete, we can have fiber optic cameras so that even if we have a slight hole, we can put a fiber optic camera down there and we can see if someone's trapped," Neal explained.

They do not know how long they will be deployed for, that all depends on Hurricane Dorian.

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