United States Department of Defense United States Department of Defense

DoD News

Bookmark and Share

 News Article

Louisiana National Guard Gears Up for Gustav

American Forces Press Service

BATON ROUGE, La., Aug. 29, 2008 – As Tropical Storm Gustav gains strength and approaches the Gulf Coast, about 3,000 Louisiana citizen-soldiers and -airmen have been activated in support of emergency operations and are prepared to support civil missions and assist with various needs and emergencies expected to arise across the state.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Sgt. Michael Slayter of Winnfield, La., tosses a hose to Army Spc. Joseph P. Gauthier of Natchitoches, La. The Louisiana National Guard soldiers are members of Detachment 1, A Company, 199th Leadership Brigade Support Battalion, 256th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, in Colfax, La. U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. Rebekah L. Malone, 225th Engineer Brigade
  

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

"Our soldiers and airmen are staged and set to deploy to our coastal parishes without hesitation,” Army Maj. Gen. Bennett Landreneau, adjutant general for the Louisiana National Guard, said. “Engineer and communications teams are reporting to coastal parishes and are set to assist our citizens and local parish emergency responders. Our security forces are deploying to ensure safety and security of homes and personnel. We are confident in our plans and ability to execute those plans on a moment’s notice.”

Louisiana Guard search-and-rescue assets are preparing for deployment to potential impact areas. Soldiers and airmen also are pre-positioning to support shelter security missions across the state, and teams are ready to support “contraflow” highway lane-reversal missions in coordination with the Louisiana State Police.

Louisiana National Guard security forces are preparing for deployment to potential impact areas, including deployment to New Orleans in support of the city’s evacuation plan. The Guard is requesting additional helicopter assets with Emergency Management Assistance Compact states in preparation for potential search-and-rescue missions.

Soldiers of the Lake Charles-based 3rd Battalion, 156th Infantry Regiment, 256th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, began the initial alert preparations for the possible landfall of Hurricane Gustav. The battalion, which consists of soldiers from all over southwestern Louisiana, has prepared vehicles and equipment for the deployment to New Orleans or any other area that may be affected.

“We’re ready to go wherever we need to,” said Lake Charles native Army 1st Sgt. Gary Burchfield of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3-156th Infantry Battalion.

The 256th IBCT’s 199th Leadership Brigade Support Battalion located in Alexandria, La., sent 2,000 gallons of water to Colfax, La., in preparation for support missions. This potentially life-saving water will be distributed to citizens if the need arises.

Additionally, 160 soldiers from the 528th and the 527th Engineer Battalions in Ruston, La., have been directed to various security missions in the Jefferson Parish area and will be assigned to the Clearview evacuation site.

Two three-man engineer assessment teams from the 1023rd Engineer Company are on stand-by for possible missions in Ascension, St. James and St. Charles parishes. “The primary function of these teams will be damage assessment,” Army Maj. Charles A. Hudson of West Monroe, administrative officer with the 528th, said.

About 30 soldiers from the Headquarters Support Company in Monroe will assist the Louisiana State Police Department’s Troop A in Baton Rouge and Troop F in Monroe in traffic-control missions as the storm closes in on the coast. Six three-man boat teams from the 830th and 832nd Concrete and Asphalt Companies in Monroe have been placed on stand-by for possible damage assessment and search-and-rescue missions in potentially devastated areas.

The National Guard has also mobilized more than 100 members to act as bus drivers and provide transportation for evacuees and security to evacuation shelters throughout the state as needed.

Airmen have been activated to support operations and satellite communication in Terrebonne, Lafourche, Jefferson, Plaquemines, Saint Bernard, and Orleans parishes to assist in first-responder ground communications. Additional teams are ready to deploy to all other areas along the coast the storm may affect.As Tropical Storm Gustav gains strength and approaches the Gulf Coast, about 3,000 Louisiana citizen-soldiers and -airmen have been activated in support of emergency operations and are prepared to support civil missions and assist with various needs and emergencies expected to arise across the state.

"Our soldiers and airmen are staged and set to deploy to our coastal parishes without hesitation,” Army Maj. Gen. Bennett Landreneau, adjutant general for the Louisiana National Guard, said. “Engineer and communications teams are reporting to coastal parishes and are set to assist our citizens and local parish emergency responders. Our security forces are deploying to ensure safety and security of homes and personnel. We are confident in our plans and ability to execute those plans on a moment’s notice.”

Louisiana Guard search-and-rescue assets are preparing for deployment to potential impact areas. Soldiers and airmen also are pre-positioning to support shelter security missions across the state, and teams are ready to support “contraflow” highway lane-reversal missions in coordination with the Louisiana State Police.

Louisiana National Guard security forces are preparing for deployment to potential impact areas, including deployment to New Orleans in support of the city’s evacuation plan. The Guard is requesting additional helicopter assets with Emergency Management Assistance Compact states in preparation for potential search-and-rescue missions.

Soldiers of the Lake Charles-based 3rd Battalion, 156th Infantry Regiment, 256th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, began the initial alert preparations for the possible landfall of Hurricane Gustav. The battalion, which consists of soldiers from all over southwestern Louisiana, has prepared vehicles and equipment for the deployment to New Orleans or any other area that may be affected.

“We’re ready to go wherever we need to,” said Lake Charles native Army 1st Sgt. Gary Burchfield of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3-156th Infantry Battalion.

The 256th IBCT’s 199th Leadership Brigade Support Battalion located in Alexandria, La., sent 2,000 gallons of water to Colfax, La., in preparation for support missions. This potentially life-saving water will be distributed to citizens if the need arises.

Additionally, 160 soldiers from the 528th and the 527th Engineer Battalions in Ruston, La., have been directed to various security missions in the Jefferson Parish area and will be assigned to the Clearview evacuation site.

Two three-man engineer assessment teams from the 1023rd Engineer Company are on stand-by for possible missions in Ascension, St. James and St. Charles parishes. “The primary function of these teams will be damage assessment,” Army Maj. Charles A. Hudson of West Monroe, administrative officer with the 528th, said.

About 30 soldiers from the Headquarters Support Company in Monroe will assist the Louisiana State Police Department’s Troop A in Baton Rouge and Troop F in Monroe in traffic-control missions as the storm closes in on the coast. Six three-man boat teams from the 830th and 832nd Concrete and Asphalt Companies in Monroe have been placed on stand-by for possible damage assessment and search-and-rescue missions in potentially devastated areas.

The National Guard has also mobilized more than 100 members to act as bus drivers and provide transportation for evacuees and security to evacuation shelters throughout the state as needed.

Airmen have been activated to support operations and satellite communication in Terrebonne, Lafourche, Jefferson, Plaquemines, Saint Bernard, and Orleans parishes to assist in first-responder ground communications. Additional teams are ready to deploy to all other areas along the coast the storm may affect.

Separately, the Louisiana National Guard has requested 20 aircraft from eight states, in an apparent response to Louisiana's 20 UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters being in Iraq. National Guards in the 54 states and territories have mutual-aid agreements in place to send troops and equipment to other states during disasters. Through such agreements, more than 50,000 Guard members converged on the region following

Hurricane Katrina.

The Louisiana Army National Guard's 1/244th Air Assault Helicopter Battalion deployed to Iraq this summer, taking the Black Hawk fleet and about 360 soldiers. The battalion was based at the New Orleans Lakefront Airport during Katrina and rescued as many as 16,000 people from the area. The battalion is now based in Hammond, La., from which the Louisiana Guard plans to manage its aviation response to storms.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal also ordered the Louisiana National Guard to be ready to deploy more than 1,500 Guardsmen to New Orleans as early as tomorrow to assist in securing the city as citizens begin to evacuate their homes.

Gustav, currently a tropical storm, is expected to make landfall as a Category 3 hurricane the morning of Sept. 2 along the Vermillion Bay area, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

(From a Louisiana National Guard news release.)

Contact Author

Related Sites:
Louisiana National Guard

Click photo for screen-resolution imageMilitary vehicles are staged and ready to bring clean water in the event that water becomes scarce after Gustav, expected to be a Category 3 hurricane, makes landfall. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Nathaniel P. Orphey, 3rd Battalion, 156th Infantry Regiment   
Download screen-resolution   
Download high-resolution


Click photo for screen-resolution imageThe Coast Guard has committed boats if they’re needed after Tropical Storm Gustav makes landfall. U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. Nathaniel P. Orphey, 3rd Battalion, 156th Infantry Regiment   
Download screen-resolution   
Download high-resolution


Click photo for screen-resolution imageArmy Spc. Joseph P. Gauthier of Natchitoches, La., member of the Louisiana National Guard’s Detachment 1, A Company, 199th Leadership Brigade Support Battalion, 256th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, in Colfax, La., gives the thumbs-up sign to soldiers working to fill a palletized load system water hippo. U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. Rebekah L. Malone, 225th Engineer Brigade   
Download screen-resolution   
Download high-resolution



Top Features

spacer

DEFENSE IMAGERY

spacer
spacer

Additional Links

Stay Connected