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Re: Haiti !

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I was notified at 1205 AM that my CA TF5 is being deployed. 
This makes it a second CA task force to go in.

Steve Gordin SE
Irvine CA

Harold Sprague wrote:
This is a tragedy of extraordinary scale.  I may be deployed as I am part of the FEMA Urban Search & Rescue (USAR) Missouri Task Force 1.  The USAR teams were established to respond primarily to domestic disasters.  However, 2 of the teams (Virginia and California) are deployable to foreign countries.  Those 2 teams have deployed.  I have been contacted to determine my readiness, if required.  I have not yet been asked to deploy. 
When a USAR team deploys, they are self sufficient from water, medical, shelter, food, etc.  We even have our own boats and our own forklift.  Something as simple as a forklift is critical.  There are planes on the ground with no means to unload them.  This creates a logistical nightmare. 
Volunteers and even the press, although well intentioned, have a tendancy to bog down the process by diverting resources.  Something as simple as understanding the Incident Command System or food or shelter, divert resources from the USAR teams when they can be responding to the critical needs of the trapped and injured victims.  This happened in Katrina as well. 
The response in Haiti is being handled by the State Department.  And again as well intentioned as they are, they do not have a wealth of experience in mounting a disaster response or understanding how to set up an Incident Command System.  Agencies such as the military, US Army Corps of Engineers, and FEMA understand these systems and how to effectively deploy and respond.  They will need some time on the ground to be effective. 
When the nuclear carriers arrive, they can serve as a platform for medical services, helicopters, housing, etc.  They produce their own water with sufficient capacity to provide water to the civilian populace.  They can even land smaller cargo aircraft on the flight deck.  A Nimitz class carrier can only be appreciated when you spend some time on them.  I have had that privilege. 
We all want to do something, but my advice is to let the process work.  It is not perfect, but if required, there will be a call to engineers for help.  I know that those on this list would respond.  I have had extensive training in USAR.  I am an engineer that has acquired some skills that could help in this disaster.  As much as I would love to be there right now, I know that I have to wait until the time is appropriate.  My superiors know that I am trained, willing, and able.  ....It sucks to wait. 

Regards, Harold Sprague

> Date: Wed, 13 Jan 2010 05:06:54 +0100
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)
> From: Refugio(--nospam--at)
> Subject: Haiti !
> Who's coming to Haiti with me ? Or who can purchase a group ticket?
> Affiliates with EWB ?
> Massive aftershocks ripping the poorest country in the western hemisphere,
> the first to emancipate slavery.
> I am slightly familiar with Patois.
> Refugio
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