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NEWS | Sept. 26, 2018

Pennsylvania Guard flies pump hoses and assesses flooding

By Capt. Travis Mueller Pennsylvania National Guard

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – Members of the Pennsylvania National Guard task force in South Carolina launched reconnaissance and transportation missions Tuesday from Myrtle Beach International Airport.

Pennsylvania Guard members and their partners in the Pennsylvania Helicopter Aquatic Rescue Team conducted the missions in response to flooding in the region from Hurricane Florence.

In the morning, a crew in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter flew to Georgetown, South Carolina, to assess flood damage from the Waccamaw River. The crew was also on the lookout for stranded residents. Residents were identified, but did not need aerial assistance. The crew also identified potential landing zones in the Georgetown area to be used in future operations.

Late in the evening, a crew in a CH-47 Chinook helicopter flew 100 water pump hoses, each weighing about 60 pounds, to a neighborhood in Georgetown.

"That Chinook crew flew very late in the evening, but we are conducting 24/7 operations so the Pennsylvania Guard is ready to complete missions here no matter the time of day," said Maj. Trevor Patrick, officer-in-charge of the Pennsylvania Guard task force in South Carolina. "By flying that equipment when they did, a local official there said they saved the neighborhood."

Residents in South Carolina are reminded to heed warnings of local officials, as they expect flood levels to continue to rise in certain areas this week.

All Pennsylvania National Guard helicopter crews and PA-HART members in South Carolina are staged at Myrtle Beach International Airport. They stand ready to assist and complete further assignments as directed by local authorities.



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