South Carolina Forestry Commission
News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 1, 2004

FORESTRY COMMISSION ON EMERGENCY STANDBY

(Columbia, SC) - More than 125 Forestry Commission employees are poised for emergency dispatch as Hurricane Frances approaches the US mainland. According to State Forester Bob Schowalter, agency crews are prepared to respond in South Carolina or in neighboring states as needed.

Sixteen four-person crews, specially trained in road clearing and debris removal, are on immediate standby. Each crew, equipped with a bulldozer and chain saws, carries enough food, water, and other supplies to be completely self-sufficient for up to three days.

Nearly 20 Forestry Commission law enforcement officers will team with SLED agents to provide evacuation assistance and security. Forestry aircraft and pilots will assist the Highway Patrol in monitoring traffic on evacuation routes.

In addition, the agency has four nine-person warehouse teams on standby to manage hurricane relief supply warehouses.

Once South Carolina needs are satisfied, Forestry Commission resources can respond to other southern states under a mutual aid agreement.

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For more information, contact: Ken Cabe, 803-896-8820.


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