DAYTON, Ohio-- Sixteen members from Ohio Task Force 1 left to assist with Hurricane Michael Tuesday morning.
The FEMA search and rescue team will report to Eglin Air Force Base in Valparaiso, Florida in Okaloosa County, where they'll work 24-hour shifts if necessary.
“We're just going to basically stay there with other FEMA teams until we get word of a need from either the state of Florida or one of the surrounding states,” said Bedford Fire Lt. Brian Harting, who is among the water rescue team members.
“We’re pretty much prepared at any point. As soon as we got back, we knew we were still in the heart of hurricane season, so everybody had our bags packed and ready to go and this one came up kind of quickly,” Harting said. “That's what we do year round, train and prepare for the worst incidents and hope for the best.”
Ohio Task Force 1 consists of people from across the state of Ohio, including two Northeast Ohio firefighters. They were recently deployed to North Carolina for Hurricane Florence.
The team helped evacuate people from their homes near the flooded Neuse River in Lenoir County.