By MATT MASTERS
The Brentwood Fire and Rescue Department sent four members of their Swift Water Rescue Team to Florida as part of the Williamson County Strike Team to assist in rescue and recovery operations for Hurricane Dorian.
The announcement was made on the department’s Facebook Page on Monday. The crew is made up of BFD’s Lt. Derek Hyde, Engineers Zach Scheitel and Jeremy Keopf and Firefighter Brandon James — they all departed for Tallahassee, Fla., where they will meet with other resources from Tennessee.
“Our firefighters deployed with members of Franklin Fire, the Williamson County Sheriffs Office and members of the county volunteer fire departments. Our members complete an extensive amount of training to participate on these specialty teams and this is a perfect opportunity for our members to execute the skills in a real world environment,” Deputy Fire Chief David Windrow said in an email. “The joint deployment provides an opportunity to build a more cohesive Williamson County team in case of a major event here in the county. The State of Tennessee has built a solid reputation for supporting disaster situations, especially in the southeast. Hopefully we never experience a disaster on the scale that we have responded to, but if we do the other states would not hesitate to support our needs.”
The now category 3 hurricane, with sustained winds of around 120 mph, had stalled over the Bahamas where, according to CNN, at least five people have been confirmed dead as a result of the storm, including an unidentified 8-year-old boy.
Dorian was previously a category 5 hurricane, the strongest category for hurricanes which have sustained winds of at least 157 mph.
Dorian’s outer bands have made landfall on Florida’s East Coast where millions of people have evacuated, and according to projections by the National Weather Service, the storm will impact the majority of the eastern coast of the US through Saturday, with the most intense winds and rainfall hitting Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas through Wednesday night.
So far no weather advisories have been issued for Middle Tennessee.