New Jersey Task Force 1 deploys to help in search and rescue efforts in Florida

New Jersey Task Force 1 is heading to a staging area in Miami, Florida as one of the 28 teams of the National Urban Search & Rescue Response System.

News 12 Staff

Jul 1, 2021, 9:52 AM

Updated 1,026 days ago

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New Jersey Task Force 1 is heading to a staging area in Miami, Florida as one of the 28 teams of the National Urban Search & Rescue Response System. 
“When I saw that tragedy unfold last week in Florida, the first thing I thought of was a New Jersey Task Force 1,” says Col. Patrick J. Callahan, with the New Jersey State Police.
It includes 70 team members, traveling in two crew carriers, three tractor-trailers, two box trucks, five F-450 crew trucks, two passenger vans, two K-9 units, two utility terrain vehicles, and a fleet service truck. 
There’s also a water rescue component of six boats with trailers and a water support trailer being deployed.
“That is part of a standard type one cash,” says NJ-TF1 Program Manager Kevin Morrissey. “It allows us to be the Swiss Army knife, anything that comes up while, we’re deployed, we can handle.”
It will be its eighth deployment as a FEMA US&R team since 2016.  Past experience in structural collapse includes 9/11, the Tropicana Hotel parking garage collapse in 2003 and the Hackensack parking garage collapse in 2010. 
“That transition from rescue to recovery is not an easy one,” says Callahan. “I actually spoke with one of our retired majors last night. He’s down there with a crisis intervention team with therapy dogs and counselors. You’re on a mission, but that mission usually results in some pretty tragic endings, but also some relief and peace and closure for families that are waiting down there.”
 They’ll be in South Florida for the next two weeks. 


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