By Air Force Tech. Sgt. John Orrell
National Guard Bureau
WASHINGTON (2/1/11) - As of 9 a.m. this morning, four governors have declared states of emergency, with the governor of Missouri mobilizing his National Guard, due to blizzard warnings and strong winter storms that have started to blanket most of the Midwest.
Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Illinois have all declared states of emergency, with three to six inches of sleet and up to a foot-and-a-half of snow anticipated for some areas.
About 600 Missouri National Guardmembers have been mobilized by Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, to help support local authorities with emergency route clearance, door-to-door safety visits, generator assistance and stranded motorist support, according to the Missouri National Guard.
They have also established liaison officers at emergency operation centers in affected cities and counties.
Army Maj. Gen. Stephen Danner, the adjutant general of the Missouri National Guard said that the Missouri Guard has dealt with this before, and he feels confident his Guardmembers will get the job done.
“The leadership and Soldiers and Airmen of the Missouri National Guard are seasoned professionals,” Danner said. “We will apply lessons learned from years of experience to help the citizens of Missouri.”
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is using the Will Rogers Air National Guard Base in Oklahoma City, Okla., for equipment staging, but as of now, no National Guard personnel are anticipated to be used to support this FEMA mission assignment, National Guard officials reported.
Kansas and Illinois are also in states of emergency, but currently the National Guard has not been activated in either state.