NEW ORLEANS — A storm of Hurricane Dorian’s magnitude requires an all hands on deck approach, so local emergency crews across the country are making their way to Florida, including from right here in Louisiana.
As Hurricane Dorian pummels the Bahamas, New Orleans firefighters and EMT's are joining a convoy of 100 first responders from Louisiana caravanning to Florida as the state prepares for Dorian to head that way.
“We've seen the same thing when we've been touched by hurricanes, other states coming in to help us. This is our way of making sure we do everything we can to help our neighbors,” said Collin Arnold, Director of New Orleans Homeland Security and Emergency Services.
Arnold said New Orleans’ crews are particularly experienced in swift water rescue situations, which are search and rescue missions that are often required during extreme flooding from storms.
So far, Hurricane Dorian has proven to be deadly and disastrous. Videos shared on social media show buildings destroyed, homes flooded, and Bahamian residents left stranded.
In an effort to help those stranded on the islands, New Orleans entrepreneur Sidney Torres met with volunteers at his Mid-City warehouse Monday to pack food for residents who'll have a long recovery period as the storm slowly passes over the Bahamas.
Story continues below video
“I'm doing a project right now in the Bahamas, this is my second project or third project,” Torres said. “We have cargo planes under contract, so we already have those reserved, but the foods, we're buying them from different locations in the city here.”
The prepared meal boxes will have food like tuna, beans, crackers, canned fruit, peanut butter, and more, with a can opener in each so those in the disaster zone can eat quickly and easily.
Torres said he's having the food sent to the island of Abaco, where there has been extreme devastation. There's enough food in the boxes to feed a family of three for 3-4 days, he said.
As far as the Louisiana task force assisting with search and rescue missions, officials said they were expected to arrive to Florida either late Monday or early Tuesday morning.