• WEATHER ALERT Winter Weather Advisory
  • Click here for the latest weather-related closings and delays

NC sends troopers, guard engineers to Puerto Rico to help with recovery efforts

EMBED </>More Videos

Fort Bragg troops deploy to Puerto Rico to help with recovery efforts (WTVD)

On Friday, hundreds of N.C. Army National Guard engineers and troops from Fort Bragg were preparing to travel to Puerto Rico to help with recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria.

The Latest

*Cooper authorizes 200 NC Guard engineers to go to PR
*Troops left Fort Bragg Friday with supplies
*Engineers and troops prepared to be there until the end of October

N.C. Army National Guard

Around 5 p.m. Governor Roy Cooper authorized sending 200 engineers from the N.C. Army National Guard to Puerto Rico to help with recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria.

Soldiers assigned to the 105th Engineer Battalion "Task Force Rhino", headquartered in Raeford, will have their advance team depart sometime this weekend with the remainder of the unit deploying next week.

They are expected to be in Puerto Rico for 30 days but are prepared to be there longer if required, officials said in a news release.

Officials said Puerto Rico requested assistance from NC National Guard through an Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) request with NC Emergency Management to aid in recovery.

Stay on top of breaking news stories with the ABC11 News App

"When our state was devastated with severe flooding during Hurricane Matthew last year, many states came to our assistance in our time of need", said Governor Cooper. "Now it's our turn to provide aid to fellow citizens in Puerto Rico."

The 105th will be the headquarters element in a multi-state engineer task force comprised of a total of 618 soldiers from the South Carolina, Louisiana, and New York Army National Guards.

Fort Bragg troops

At Fort Bragg, the nation's largest military installation is now the central hub for Hurricane Maria relief.

The Department of Defense's Defense Logistics Agency is staging at Fort Bragg's Simmons Airfield ahead of their deployment to Puerto Rico.

Friday, 200 truckloads of food, water, generators, blankets, and other equipment departed Fort Bragg.

First, the convoy will head to Florida where the supplies will be shipped to Puerto Rico.

EMBED More News Videos

Fort Bragg troops deploy to Puerto Rico to help with recovery efforts

Navy Logistics Specialist Liseth Perez's family is from Puerto Rico. She just made contact with them for the first time since Hurricane Maria hit.

Though she won't be there physically to help, her help with moving the supplies out will go a long way.

"I don't even know how to explain it, it's an overwhelming feeling to know that what we're doing here is going to be so helpful over there because I know that we heard that it's pretty bad over there."

All of the DLA personnel are volunteers and are assigned to the mission in Puerto Rico through October.

Related Topics:
hurricane mariaraleigh newspuerto ricou.s. & worldRaleigh
(Copyright ©2018 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.)