U.S. Northern Command provides additional support in wake of Hurricane Ike

By NORAD and USNORTHCOM Public Affairs | September 13, 2008

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. – U.S. Northern Command is coordinating Department of Defense support to FEMA, state and local response in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike’s landfall in Texas.

The following is a list of DoD assets and personnel that are part of U.S. Northern Command’s support efforts:

NEW OPERATIONS:

  • USNORTHCOM conducted six search and rescue missions near Galveston using HH-60 helicopters. The search and rescue missions were coordinated from the Joint Personnel Recovery Center, as part of a unified federal, state and local search and rescue effort.

  • USNORTHCOM has established a link on its Web site to the Aidmatrix Network, which provides people access to technology that connects donors with relief organizations. 

    Aidmatrix is a nonprofit organization sponsored and funded by FEMA.  More than 35,000 corporations, nonprofits, and government partners use Aidmatrix to mobilize aid in areas of hunger, medical, and disaster.  Aidmatrix provides resource management tools for unsolicited donations of cash, in-kind products and unaffiliated volunteers. More information on Aidmatrix is at www.aidmatrix.org.

ONGOING OPERATIONS:

  • USNORTHCOM is providing FEMA with high-water vehicles, small boats, air search rescue assets including helicopters and aircraft to assist in search and rescue operations, and Emergency Preparedness Liaison Officers to support the Defense Coordination Officers.

  • The 331st Air Expeditionary Group at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, pre-positioned 42 search and rescue aircraft to assist FEMA with post-landfall search and rescue.

  • USNORTHCOM coordinates search and rescue operations with mission partners in accordance with the National Search and Rescue Plan and in support of FEMA.

  • DoD has designated the military installations of Fort Sam Houston, Texas, and Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, as FEMA National Logistics Staging Areas to support forward distribution of supplies and equipment to affected areas.

  • Defense Coordinating Officers/Elements for FEMA Regions X and VI were activated in response to Hurricane Ike to support FEMA as the lead federal agency. They are located in Austin, Texas, and are working closely with FEMA and other federal, tribal, state, and local officials to determine what unique DoD capabilities can be brought to assist in mitigating the effects of a natural disaster.

  • Designated two military installations (Lackland Air Force Base, Texas and Randolph Air Force Base, Texas) as base support installations. The installations will serve as locations where military units conduct logistical operations.

U.S. Air Forces Northern is the air component to U.S. Northern Command and is located at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla. AFNORTH assists USNORTHCOM in fulfilling the air component of Homeland Defense and Defense Support of Civil Authorities missions.

U.S. Army North is the land component to U.S. Northern Command and is located at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. ARNORTH assists USNORTHCOM in fulfilling the land component of Homeland Defense and Defense Support of Civil Authorities missions.

USNORTHCOM, located in Colorado Springs, Colo., is the joint combatant command formed in the wake of the Sept.11, 2001, terrorist attacks to provide homeland defense and defense support of civil authorities. Supporting FEMA, state and local response in the wake of Hurricane Ike, USNORTHCOM is continuing to assist with recovery efforts and is prepared to respond to other potential missions.