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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 4, 2005
CONTACT: FWC Press Office Willie Puz, (772) 215-9459

First Florida Search and Rescue Teams Return from Mississippi

A contingent of Florida’s first search and rescue teams deployed to Mississippi return today, and are available to discuss their experiences as first responders following the landfall of Hurricane Katrina.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) serves as the lead agency for Florida's search and rescue efforts in Mississippi, working in conjunction with other state law enforcement agencies. It was the first time in the agency’s history that FWC officers were deployed to assist out-of-state victims of a natural disaster.

FWC’s returning officers were part of the first teams of responders to deploy to downtown Biloxi. The search and rescue team cleared 70-80 houses a day, completing critical life safety missions following the devastating impacts of Hurricane Katrina. Additionally, they provided security and support for an Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) team from Tampa Bay.

With thousands of National Guardsmen, law enforcement officers, medical professionals and responders mobilizing for deployment or on the ground in impacted areas, Florida continues to provide record disaster response aid to neighboring states as they continue response and recovery efforts following this catastrophic storm.

A team of 22 officers from FWC will debrief today at the FWC Law Enforcement Training Center in Havana.

The officers will be available at: 6:00 p.m. Sunday, September 4, 2005 FWC Law Enforcement Training Center 29 Academy Drive Havana, FL 32333

Directions:

I-10 to Exit 192 to Quincy; turn left on academy drive.

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Last updated: November 09, 2007

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