National Guard helps with storm recovery
October 30, 2012 ·
An estimated 250 National Guard members will be deployed by the end of the day to counties needing assistance in storm recovery and the Guard has added another duty to its storm response list as a result of June’s derecho.
Adjutant Gen. James Hoyer says Guard Liaison Officer Teams
are deployed in Jefferson, Fayette, Berkeley,
Greenbrier, Tucker, Pocahontas, Webster, Hampshire and Grant counties.
“(They’re) working for directly for the county emergency
services director providing that director a direct link back to Jimmy Gianette
and my folks back here at the Capitol and at Charleston,” Hoyer said.
Hoyer said Welfare Teams are also in place. Their job is to
make contact with people whose services are cut off. They can also provide food
and water if needed.
The state also put together a new type of team to help power
line crews in an effort to prevent the widespread problems that occurred after
June’s derecho, when it took up to two weeks to restore power in some areas
that include representatives from the Guard, Forestry and Highways Departments.
“Power crews come primarily from out of state,” Hoyer said. “They
don’t know a lot about our terrain, where places are located; they may need
some assistance with cutting and removing debris, getting up to a location.”
“So we found after the derecho that it would be a good idea
to help expedite restoration of power of linking these assets up with those
First Energy and AEP,” he said.
National Guard liaison teams are also located at the power
“So now we have that direct communication going on
understanding what things that we as government need to do to enhance the
ability of those companies to be able to restore power,” Hoyer said.
“The feedback that I’ve gotten so far today is that it’s
making an impact,” Hoyer said “Obviously the average person who’s out of power
may not see or seem to think that it’s having that significant of an impact but
from what we’ve seen and what we do at the operational level I think it’s going
to have a positive impact on our ability as the state to be able to the