DOD, Other Agencies Monitor Hurricane Sandy
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 26, 2012 The Department of Defense and other federal agencies are keeping a close eye on the progress of Hurricane Sandy, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said today.
Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Earl Brookins, left, and Petty Officer 2nd Class Trauis Pattillo load sand bags onto a truck in preparation for Hurricane Sandy in Norfolk, Va., Oct. 26, 2012. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Billy Ho
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
“We're obviously closely monitoring the storm,” Little told reporters at the Pentagon. The department, he added, is currently coordinating with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Northern Command and the National Guard.
“We stand ready to assist the potentially impacted states across the Northeast should they require assistance,” Little said.
Sandy, a Category 1 hurricane with winds upwards of 75 miles per hour, is currently off the eastern coast of southern Florida, moving north. The storm has prompted the governors of Maryland and Virginia to declare states of emergency today, National Guard Bureau officials said.
Little said the department anticipates it will activate and deploy a defense coordinating officer and defense coordinating elements in support of FEMA regions throughout the Northeast.
More than 45,500 National Guard soldiers and airmen, he said, are ready and available to assist governors within seven states and the District of Columbia to respond immediately to Hurricane Sandy if needed.
“It's important to recognize that this has the potential to be a dangerous storm, including in the National Capital Region,” Little said. “I'd encourage everyone to heed the instructions of their local emergency managers, as well as review their hurricane checklists and evacuation plans as the storm approaches the East Coast.”
At this time, Little said, no aircraft, ships or personnel have been relocated out of the storm's projected path.
“But I've heard that local commanders along the East Coast, particularly Navy installations in the Hampton Roads area, are starting to prepare their assets in the event they need to evacuate them,” Little said. “There are standard operating procedures, of course, for movement of assets during storms of this kind.”