At the direction of the Governor, the Louisiana National Guard has more than 3,000 Guardsmen ready to support current and future operations ahead of Hurricane Laura’s landfall.
The prepped operations include: high-water vehicle and boat evacuations, both boat and air search and rescue operations, logistical support, engineering support, levee inspection/security, and placement of liaison officer teams assisting parish emergency operations centers.
While Gov. Jon Bel Edwards recently authorized the activation of the entire LANG force, the number of guardsmen mobilized will continue to increase in order to provide trained and ready soldiers and airmen to support civil authorities in response activities, safeguarding the population, saving lives and protecting critical infrastructure.
The LANG currently has approximately 19 helicopters available, along with 222 high-water vehicles and 65 boats manned and staged in southern Louisiana prepared to provide evacuation, search and rescue, and recon support.
In order to provide logistical support to citizens following the storm, guardsmen have strategically placed 921,000 liters of water and 528,000 MREs for potential distribution.
The LANG also has 10 engineer assessment teams and eight engineer work teams staged and ready to respond following destruction from Laura in order to clear roads and inspect infrastructure.
Here are some photos the LANG sent of what's happening:
Louisiana National Guardsmen from Delta Company, 2-151st Aviation Regiment conduct recertification training on a LUH-72 Lakota helicopter hoist system used for rescue operations at the Hammond Regional Airport ahead of Hurricane Laura, Aug. 25, 2020. Guardsmen continue to prepare to respond to the citizens of Louisiana prior to landfall of Hurricane Laura. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Toby Valadie)
The Louisiana National Guard stages key equipment and personnel in Lake Charles, La., Aug. 25, 2020, in order to better respond to rescue efforts following Hurricane Laura. (Courtesy Photo)
Guardsmen with 256th Infantry Brigade Combat Team conduct refresher boat training in Lake Charles, La., Aug. 25, 2020, ahead of Hurricane Laura’s landfall in southwest Louisiana. (Courtesy Photo)
Louisiana National Guard Soldiers and Airmen assist evacuating citizens in southwest Louisiana prior to the landfall of Hurricane Laura at the Burton Coliseum in Lake Charles, Louisiana, Aug. 26, 2020. Burton Coliseum is being used as a transition location to process evacuees and move them to safe locations outside of the path of Laura. (Courtesy Photo)