Re: OT: USA USAR teams to Haiti quake?
- --- In SoCalFire@yahoogroups.com, Firedude <firedude92382@...> wrote (in part):
>While it may be a big joke to you, this is an _international_ mission - which
> ... the other big joke is that TF-6 is 10 minutes away from March AFB,
> while it will take TF-2 1-2 hours to get to March to load the planes and go,,
> oh the politics will always get in the way of common sense and the real
> mission of saving lives,,,TF-2 should get there in time for the Recovery Mission
means the teams are working for the US Agency for International Assistance (USAID),
and not FEMA. The teams have to be previously vetted and have been issued
special passports. The last I knew, of the eight California Task Forces,
only CA-TF2 (L.A. County) and CA-TF3 (Menlo Park) are in the USAID pool of
TFs certified for international duty.
During the week, March is primarily staffed by “dual status” (civilians during the week, Reservists one weekend each month) personnel – myself included. It may well be an AFRC-owned base, but I can assure you that March ARB doesn’t “shut down” after each drill weekend. That’s okay though. Even when I was on active duty, I had no idea that there were actually “full-time Reservists” (not technically accurate, but easiest way to explain to the uninformed) either.
With an event like this, I’m certain there were plenty of flight crew members and aircraft maintainers who volunteered to contribute – and could have been ready to go in a very short time.
Two Florida teams launched immediately on USAF airlift aircraft. CA TF2 and
VA TF1 went today. Based on my dozen years of state-level logistics support
experience at CA OES, I'm reasonably certain that much of the delay was the
scheduling of USAF airlift aircraft, crews, and the flight time for the aircraft
to get to March ARB - delay time that would be in the mix even if TF6 was first up
to go. [Remember that March is a Reserve Base, staffed by Weekend Warriors.
The airlift arm of the USAF is not like a fire department with crews on duty waiting
to scramble like their fighter squadron brothers and sisters.]