The Department of Defense (DoD) remains fully engaged in the ongoing federal disaster response efforts underway in eastern and northeastern United States as a result of Hurricane Sandy. In the context of our current support activities the department is focusing on providing unique capabilities to support civilian efforts to restore power to vital facilities and to assist with the resumption of mass transit services in the New York and New Jersey area.
Here is today’s update on DoD’s response to Hurricane Sandy (as of 9 a.m. EDT):
National Guard Operations:
− Nearly 7,400 Army and Air National Guard soldiers and airmen in nine eastern states are performing communications, engineering, evacuation, medical, security, search and rescue, sheltering, debris removal and transportation missions.
− New York (2,632); New Jersey (1,900); Pennsylvania (1,225); Connecticut (670) and West Virginia (540), currently have the highest number of Guard members responding to the storm.
− Army National Guard units from North Carolina, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Georgia) are providing six UH-60s and two CH-47s to assist search and rescue movements from Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst.
• Yesterday, fifty New York Guard members evacuated residents from a structurally unsound nursing home in Brooklyn.
• The New York National Guard helped distribute 144,000 meals from 16 Point-of-Distribution locations they set up in New York City and Long Island.
• The New York Air Guard’s 105th Airlift Wing is receiving 17 C-17s and C-5s that are carrying critical civilian power restoration assets that will aid utility restoration efforts.
− The New Jersey National Guard has rescued more than 2,000 people and 200 pets from flooded areas and transported them to a safety.
− The West Virginia National Guard Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Enhanced Response Force Package have assessed snow-damaged buildings in 14 areas throughout Nicholas County.
• New York National Guard members continue to go door-to-door in the New York City high rises to deliver food and check on citizens.
• New Jersey National Guard members have been feeding more than 300 residents at the Menlow Park Veteran's Home, using a mobile field kitchen.
− National Guard members throughout the area continue to clear debris so that local power and transportation teams can restore power to millions.
− The Pennsylvania National Guard is partnering with FEMA to use Fort Indiantown Gap as a base to distribute critical supplies.
− The New Jersey National Guard is providing power generation at State Police facilities.
Status of DoD Operations
− The USS Wasp is anchored approximately five miles off of the coast of Brooklyn. The Wasp contingent includes three MH-53Es and two MH-60Ss (with rescue swimmers). Also anchored off the coast of Brooklyn, N.Y. are the USS San Antonio with one Landing Craft Utility (LCU) and four MH-60S (with rescue swimmers) and the USS Carter Hall with one LCU. These vessels are prepared to support potential Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) missions, if requested. They will also be available to provide refueling and command and control of DoD helicopter support missions in the area.
− 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit: Initial elements came aboard the USS Wasp on yesterday with more scheduled to arrive today. Total Force will include: six CH-53Es, six UH-1s, and 320 Personnel.
− The secretary of defense approved the Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration's use of three of its National Defense Reserve Fleet vessels to berth first responders in New York City. The Training Ship (TS) Empire State is in New York and in use with 266 first responders being berthed and fed. The TS Kennedy is making preparations for movement from Massachusetts and arrives Nov. 5. The Ready Reserve Fleet Vessel SS Wright is making preparations for movement from Baltimore and is scheduled to arrive on Sunday.
Defense Logistics Agency (DLA)
− DLA has coordinated with a contractor to assist the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) in assessing damage and determine requirements to restore port operations.
CLASS I Commodities (Food)
− 1.5 million meals are expected to be delivered to FEMA facilities in West Virginia by noon today (750,000 arrived at Charleston and 750,000 enroute to Martinsburg by noon). 1.3 million meals are at vendors and ready for delivery.
− DLA is currently working to provide 1 million meals to New York City by Nov. 5.
CLASS III Commodities (Fuel)
− DLA is issuing fuel to the New Jersey National Guard
− 60 fuel trucks arrived at incident support bases (ISBs) at Westover Air Force Base, Mass., and McGuire Air Force Base, N.J. delivering approximately 200,000 gallons of fuel.
− 600,000 gallons, with trucks, available in Virginia for movement to the ISBs and the capacity to deliver 200,000 gallons of fuel per day for 10 days.
− Meeting FEMA’s request for two generators (2000Kw and 1500Kw) for delivery at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst tomorrow. 22 generators (500Kw-2000Kw) will be delivered to Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst on Saturday from North Carolina, Texas and Florida.
− 69 pumps are scheduled to arrive at Lakehurst Naval Air Station, NJ:
Two 68,000 gallon-per-minute (GPM) pumps and an additional 21 pumps (900-2800 GPM) are scheduled to arrive today, November 2.
The remaining pumps (900-2800 GPM) are scheduled to arrive on over the weekend.
− 25 generators are enroute to Lakehurst Naval Air Station today, and 22 are scheduled to be delivered tomorrow.
Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)
− Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, chief of the Army Corps of Engineers has toured the affected areas in New York City and northern New Jersey, met with governmental leaders, and received updates on current and emerging requirements for power and unwatering.
− Hoboken Terminal: USACE in collaboration with the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy, New Jersey Transit, New York City Waterways and others conducted a joint site assessment survey yesterday. USACE personnel will visit terminal today, to determine if a temporary generator can be safely installed. The PATH station at the terminal has been unwatered; however, the tubes remain flooded.
− USACE is also working options and analysis of the Hoboken Terminal Pier Refinery Download Point, scoping the mission and working contractor options.
− Unwatering: USACE has technical unwatering expertise on the ground with State and City leaders and engineers to advise on unwatering critical infrastructure.
− Pumping underway in New York City at Battery Park Underpass/West Street Underpass (USACE) and Holland Tunnel (MTA).
− USACE developed the technical plans to start pumping operations at the following sites: Brooklyn Battery Tunnel, Queens Midtown Tunnel, Jersey City PATH Train Tunnel, World Trade Center Site, South Ferry Station, Montague Tunnel, 14th Street Tunnel, and 53rd Street Tunnel
− USACE is completing site assessments for the Rockaway Waste Water Treatment Plant (WWTP) and the Passaic Valley Sewage Commission WWTP.
− USACE shipped (12) 8-inch and (13) 6-inch pumps to support unwatering operations. USACE is tracking the arrival of 69 additional pumps from DLA.
− Temporary Emergency Power: USACE is supporting the Emergency Temporary Power mission in New York and New Jersey. USACE has 319 generators staged at forward locations.
− USACE power teams conducted 74 of 84 requested assessments and installed 14 generators. Most of these generators have been installed at hospitals and nursing homes.
− The 249th Engineer Battalion is preparing to move a 13 Megawatt Power package via convoy from Fort Belvoir to support Consolidated Edison. This system will be plugged into the ConEd’s East River grid.
− Additional 249th Engineer Battalion personnel were deployed last night to support anticipated missions in Ohio and Connecticut.