When I saw the first news videos of people working day and night to come to the aide of others, I started to think back on the pure hell I thought I went through when I worked the winter storm of '93. Even 12 years later I still have flashbacks when it snows. Now, looking at the traumatic devastation on the coast and all that the people down there are going through, I feel guilty. Guilty for thinking I had it bad when I had to work 96 hours straight, and guilty for sitting here in my air conditioned home.
I'll tell you this... whether it's 9/11, a tsunami or Hurricane Katrina, I thank God for the people who are willing to go through the 7 layers of hell to help pull a brother or sister out. They fight their way down, reach out and grab the hand of someone in need and carry them to safety. God bless each and every one of you... and, most of all, God bless the people effected by the sheer devastation left behind by Hurricane Katrina.
Birmingham Fire & Hoover Fire Departments have sent a large contingent to the coast.
Birmingham sent 1's Heavy Rescue, 2 vans of personnel totaling 30 firefighters and a Battalion Unit.
Hoover sent their new Technical Rescue 4, another Technical Rescue, a heavy duty generator, Rescue 42, a Mobile Command Unit and 35 firefighters. Several of my buddies from both departments volunteered to go.
UAB Critical Care Transport has been flying infants up to Birmingham's Children's Hospital and UAB Hospital. One of my old partners was the RT on the flight. LifeSaver sent a chopper to help with the transporting of patients.
Calera Fire Department sent a Rescue Dive Team.
Alabaster Fire & Rescue has sent personnel.
The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office has sent personnel and will rotate more in.
Some other area departments that I'm aware of are Decatur and Madison Fire Departments. Both have sent a Heavy Rescue. If you know of another department in the Birmingham area, let me know and I'll add them to the list.
Update: Trussville sent their Swift Water Rescue Team along with a large group of Firefighters with plans to send more. (Thanks Cindy!)
Update: Cullman sent 4 Firefighters, 2 Paramedics, 4 Cullman County Rescue Squad members. They took with them two Heavy Rescues, 3/4 Ton Cullman Co. Rescue Squad Truck with Dive Team and boats in tow. Along with that, they took 4-55 gallon drums of diesel fuel, 55 gallons of gasoline, and 2-55 gallon drums of water. Also, Cullman EMS sent two of their finest with full equipment. Last Lane heard, they sent them to Slidell, LA. Lane will be going on Tuesday evening. (Thanks Lane... stay safe!)
Update: Birmingham PD left with a large group of officers with plans to rotate more into the area.
I'll be praying for you guys when I pray for everyone else down there. America is lucky to have people like you.
A few good charities:
• Catholic Charities, USA - (703) 549-1390
• Operation Blessing - (800) 436-6348
• Salvation Army - (800) SAL-ARMY
Help package and load supplies:
• Birmingham: (205) 836-6722
• Pelham: (205) 380-2230
• Anniston: (256) 236-5252
• Gadsden: (256) 547-1668
You can listen to the rescue/recovery here:
David Hitchner's Feed
David Hitchner, in Baton Rouge, is providing a dual stereo feed from Baton Rouge.
The Right Channel is in Search mode providing all of Baton Rouge's State system site freqs. The Left channel is providing US Customs/US Coast Guard Operations. This feed can be found here:
http://aurora.foghaven.net:8000/LSP.m3u - 1000 users max
http://nola-intel.org:8003/fema - 1000 users max
http://mirror1.ev1helps.net:8080/lspbtr.m3u - 2000 users max
http://stfunoob.com/nola/scanner.pls - 2500 users max
http://us3.comclub.org:8000/fema_scanner - 1000 users max
http://radio2.wrpn.net:5000/nola_scanner.m3u - 32 users max
http://fyreplace.com:12345 - 50 clients max
http://radio.artplz.com:8000/BatonRouge - 600 users max
http://egg.dishnuts.net:8000/LASP.m3u - 100 users max
http://hostamazing.com/nola/scanner.pls - 500 users max
More information regarding radio traffic and frequencies can be found here: Radio Reference
Below are just a few of the units being sent to the area:
Birmingham Fire & Rescue : 1's Heavy Rescue...
Birmingham Fire & Rescue : Battalion Unit...
Birmingham Fire & Rescue : Transport Van...
Birmingham Fire & Rescue : Transport Van...
Birmingham Police Department : Command Center...
Birmingham Police Department...
Hoover Fire Department : Technical Rescue...
Hoover Fire Department : Mobile Command Unit...
Hoover Fire Department : Rescue 42...
U.A.B. CCT : UAB-1
U.A.B. Critical Care Transport
Jefferson County Sheriff's Office...