DALRYMPLE SENDS MORE NATIONAL GUARD TO FLOOD FIGHT
BISMARCK, N.D. - Gov. Jack Dalrymple today directed Major General David Sprynczynatyk, adjutant general, to send another 100 National Guard soldiers to join in Fargo's flood fight to begin 24-hour operations as early as tomorrow.
The National Guard currently has 115 soldiers supporting flood operations in Fargo. In all, about 3,300 National Guard members are available to assist flood fighting efforts. The National Guard also has two eight-member "quick response" teams in Wahpeton to assist in potential emergencies.
"We want to make sure we have personnel and resources in place before the Red River crests," Dalrymple said. "While we continue pushing for federal resources, it's important that we do all we can to address this pending emergency."
Dalrymple has directed more than a dozen state agencies to assist citizens throughout the state who are contending with flooding or the risk of flooding. The N.D. National Guard, Department of Emergency Services, State Water Commission, Department of Health and others are already serving in communities threatened by flooding or are prepared to engage. Specific actions taken by the Governor to expand the state's preparedness include:
· Dalrymple and the state's Congressional Delegation continue to press the Federal Emergency Management Agency to get a Presidential Emergency Declaration approved. In response, FEMA is sending today a 26-member Incident Management Assistance Team (IMAT) to North Dakota to assist the state Emergency Operations Center in coordinating additional federal resources to combat spring flooding. The Presidential Emergency Declaration would make federal resources available to support the state's emergency response.
· The Governor has activated the State Emergency Operation Center and has assigned the Department of Emergency Services to coordinate statewide flood response services.
· Governor Dalrymple, Sprynczynatyk, state emergency service officials and other agency directors have attended flood preparation meetings in Lisbon, Wahpeton, Fargo, Valley City, Jamestown, Devils Lake and Beulah to coordinate local and state flood responses.
· The State Water Commission continues to provide data to decision makers as they plan for flood mitigation and response efforts.
· The North Dakota Highway Patrol has coordinated with other law enforcement agencies to review traffic management plans and to identify available resources.
· The Department of Emergency Services has coordinated with local, state, and federal agencies and voluntary organizations flooding developed evacuation plans, sheltering, and mass-care plans.
· The Department of Transportation continues to monitor state highway conditions and provides travel information through the 511 calling system and at the department's website: www.dot.nd.gov
· The Department of Health has worked with long-term care facilities and hospitals in at-risk cities to develop a tracking system and to coordinate the transfer of patients and residents if evacuations become necessary.
· The Department of Human Services has worked with local and state organizations to coordinate evacuation plans and reception centers for vulnerable citizens.