OKLAHOMA CITY – As Hurricane Dorian skirts the coasts of Florida and Georgia, Oklahomans deployed to Florida are taking the “bull by the horns,” fire officials say.
Last week, Oklahoma Task Force 1 and volunteers with the Oklahoma Red Cross deployed to Florida to help with recovery efforts.
According to the Oklahoma City Fire Department, the state of Florida was divided into three branches: Branch I in Miami, Branch II in Orlando and Branch III in Jacksonville.
OK-TF1 is operating from Orlando in the central portion of the state.
Chief Brad Smith, Oklahoma Task Force 1 Leader, says Branch 1 was shut down and its resources started moving north to Orlando Tuesday morning.
Smith released a statement Tuesday evening and said:
“”Dorian is currently a Cat 3 and has slowed down again 100 miles east of West Palm Beach. The projected path has shifted slightly east but it looks like it will continue to skirt the coast as it moves forward. Branch I (Miami) will be shut down and its resources began moving our way (north) at 0500 this morning. We are just now beginning to see first signs that the outer bands are approaching our location. Contingency plans for crew safety are in place in the case that we experience heavy wind/rain; we aren’t expecting that to happen. The next 24 hours will determine where we go and what we will be doing. On a side note, you all would be proud to see our guys work. We have many people working in new roles that have absolutely taken the “bull by the horns” and are exceeding expectations. It’s an impressive sight.”
Hurricane Dorian was downgraded to a Category 2 storm and is skirting the coasts of Florida and Georgia Wednesday morning. The storm could make landfall in the Carolinas.