Texas swift water team, equipment deployed to Louisiana

The Guymon Fire Department has three boats, specialized suits and equipment for water rescues


AGN Media
Amarillo Globe-News

GUYMON, Texas — Sunday morning, Guymon Fire Department's Swift Water Rescue team was contacted by Oklahoma Emergency Management to deploy to Louisiana to assist and aid in specialized rescues resulting from Hurricane Ida.

According to a news release, Fire Chief Grant Wadley stated, "We were contacted by the State Emergency Management Office at 9:30 a.m. Sunday morning, our team of five Rescue Water Technicians and boats were packed and on the road by 2:30 p.m. that afternoon."

During Hurricane Katrina, the team deployed to Houston and performed multiple water rescues there, and they were involved in the more recent flooding events in Kingfisher, Tulsa, and Stillwater, to name a few.
During Hurricane Katrina, the team deployed to Houston and performed multiple water rescues there, and they were involved in the more recent flooding events in Kingfisher, Tulsa, and Stillwater, to name a few. (Photo/Guymon FD)

"It seems strange that Guymon would have an advanced swift water team out here in the Panhandle, but over the past 10-years they have been deployed to several events," the news release says. During Hurricane Katrina, the team deployed to Houston and performed multiple water rescues there, and they were involved in the more recent flooding events in Kingfisher, Tulsa, and Stillwater, to name a few.

The Guymon team is first heading to Baton Rouge, to join Oklahoma Task Force 1, which is already there, the release states. They will be part of a larger specialized team of Swift Water rescue members from the Oklahoma City and Tulsa areas.

"Guymon's Swift Water Team are all Firefighters, Paramedics, and Swift Water Rescue Technicians which make us very well rounded to handle a large assortment of specialized rescues and take on additional assignments when they are down there," said Chief Wadley.

The Guymon Fire Department has three boats, specialized suits and equipment for water rescues, and each member is specially trained for situations such as the one in the wake of the Category 4 hurricane, which slammed into Louisiana on Sunday and continues to threaten other parts of the country as a tropical depression.

The Guymon Swift Water team is expected to be deployed for 14 days, but will adapt and continue to carry out the mission of saving lives the very best they can, the release says. If conditions change and improve, they might return sooner.

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McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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