South Carolina volunteers, first responders head to Louisiana for Ida recovery

Grand Strand

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — As Ida leaves behind major damage in Louisiana, people from the Grand Strand are dropping everything to go and help.

“I really expect it to be really chaotic for quite awhile,” disaster workforce engagement manager for the SC Red Cross Karen Anderson said. “I understand there’s a lot of power outages. There’s a lot of cell phones that are out.”

Anderson spoke with News13 from Beaumont, Texas, where she flew into from Myrtle Beach, before heading out to Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

“We’ll be sheltering, feeding, we’ll be out delivering supplies, helping them to get their places cleaned up,” Anderson said.

One of her roles will be helping volunteers get checked in. So far, over 20 have been deployed from South Carolina, amid hundreds more from all over.

“Expecting to shelter anywhere from 10-20,000 people last night into the coming days,” communications director for SC Red Cross Ben Williamson said. “So our teams will join the larger effort and the majority of the volunteers will be working in sheltering.”

South Carolina first responders are making the trek there, too. The governor’s office said so far, eight members of the Palmetto Incident Support Team are in Louisiana. There also is a South Carolina Task Force swiftwater rescue team on its way. That is made up of 17 team members and four swiftwater boats.

The Myrtle Beach Fire Department is sending two people, and Horry County Fire Rescue is sending three.

“These individuals have a little extra training on how to navigate those areas,” Captain Jonathan Evans with Myrtle Beach fire said. “And how to use the boats in those areas and all that kind of stuff. So they’re down there to help those individuals who might be trapped in a flooded area. That can’t get away from their home or wherever they might be.”

The Red Cross says if you’d like to help, consider volunteering or donating.

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