An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : News : Article View
NEWS | Sept. 7, 2021

Florida Guard’s Red Horse engineers respond to Hurricane Ida

By Capt. Larissa Lambert, Louisiana National Guard

BELLE CHASSE, La. – Approximately 30 members from the 202nd Rapid Engineer Deployable Heavy Operational Repair Squadron Engineers (Red Horse) out of Camp Blanding, Florida, helped removed debris and downed trees from roadways Sept. 4. 

Red Horse is a specialized, highly mobile civil engineering team of Florida Army and Air National Guardsmen that provides rapid response capabilities for multiple worldwide contingencies and operations.

Working alongside the Louisiana Air National Guard’s 159th Civil Engineering Squadron, the team was equipped with chainsaws, skid steers and bobcats to remove trees and limbs from driveways and roads in New Orleans residential areas.

“Red Horse is a heavily mobile, rapid engineering group that is here to help aid in recovery and route clearing,” said Staff Sgt. James Bishop, 202nd RHS heavy equipment operator. “Any time we have downed trees, we want our guys to come is as quick as possible, take care of the folks that are here, make sure they have access in and out of their areas, so they can get the help they need.”

New Orleans Parks and Parkways have been working with small crews but needed the heavy equipment and personnel that Red Horse offered so people can return to their homes.

“I’ve been working with a small crew that doesn’t have heavy equipment, for the last few days that are filling in the gaps of the larger equipment crews because there is so much to be done,” said Andrew Billon, a Parks and Parkways arborist. “Any help we can get is amazing. I have this huge, awesome crew of National Guard folks that have shown up with vigor and energy, helping out a ton.”

National Guard units from more than 10 states are providing disaster relief in Louisiana through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC).

Once notified of an EMAC request for support, Red Horse quickly assembles a team with mission-essential tools to respond within 24 hours to EMAC members.

Helping the local community with hurricane relief has been a new experience for Spc. Tavia Biles, a combat engineer with the 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team. Biles said New Orleans residents have been very friendly and welcoming to the Red Horse team. 



Related Articles
A U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor assigned to the 1st Fighter Wing, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, is fueled by a KC-135 Stratotanker from the 185th Air Refueling Wing, Iowa Air National Guard, during exercise Sentry Savannah hosted by the Air Dominance Center in Savannah, Georgia, May 9, 2024. Sentry Savannah is the Air National Guard’s premier 4th- and 5th-gen fighter integration exercise, involving more than 775 participants and 40 aircraft from six flying units.
Air National Guard Conducts Sentry Savannah Exercise
By Master Sgt. Caila Arahood and Senior Airman Victoria Coursey, | June 17, 2024
SAVANNAH, Ga. - Approximately 775 participants and 40 aircraft from six flying units participated in the 10th year of exercise Sentry Savannah hosted by the Air Dominance Center May 6-18.Sentry Savannah is the Air National...

Mississippi National Guard 2nd Lt. Austin Riels, assigned to the 113th Military Police Company, 112th Military Police Battalion, waves vehicles through a traffic control point after Hurricane Ida, Grand Isle, Louisiana, Sept. 17, 2021.
National Guard neighbors help Louisiana rebuild after Ida
By Staff Sgt. Gregory Stevens, | Oct. 1, 2021
NEW ORLEANS – Every military service member understands sacrifice and selfless service are part of the big picture before taking an oath to defend the United States. After Hurricane Ida ripped through Louisiana Aug. 29,...

Louisiana National Guardsmen rescue people in LaPlace, Louisiana, in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida. More than 6,000 members of the National Guard from more than a dozen states were in Louisiana assisting state and federal partners with relief efforts.
National Guard responds in force to Hurricane Ida
By National Guard Bureau | Sept. 1, 2021
ARLINGTON, Va. – Thousands of National Guard Soldiers and Airmen responding to Hurricane Ida in Louisiana have rescued hundreds of people, cleared roads and distributed food and water to victims of the devastating storm.More...