Oklahoma National Guardsmen gearing up for hurricane relief efforts

Wednesday, August 31st 2005, 2:42 pm
By: News On 6

Oklahoma's Army National Guard is being deployed to help in Louisiana. News on 6 reporter Lori Fullbright says a news release from the Oklahoma National Guard says all members of the Oklahoma Army National Guard's 45th Infantry Brigade must contact their unit immediately so they can go to Louisiana.

The News on 6 went to the Sand Springs office of the National Guard Wednesday, and they says it's too soon to say yet how many Guard members will be needed or how long they'll be gone. One member told the News on 6, he’s to report at 7 AM Thursday.

Guardsmen will be headed to Louisiana, which is under a state of emergency. Their job will include enforcing curfews, keeping people out of restricted areas, prohibiting the sale of alcohol and regulating the possession and use of firearms. The Emergency Management Assistance Compact allows National Guard units from all over to quickly mobilize people and equipment to help with disaster relief. Under the EMAC, more than 800 members from 38 states helped during an 85 day period last year after Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne in Florida.

The News on 6 spoke to a woman whose husband is in the Broken Arrow Transportation Unit and he was told Tuesday, the deployment was voluntarily, but then notified Wednesday afternoon it was mandatory, so many people are rushing around getting ready to leave at a moment's notice.