North Carolina sending more help to Puerto Rico

Friday, November 17, 2017
North Carolina sending more help to Puerto Rico
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North Carolina sending more help to Puerto Rico

RALEIGH, North Carolina (WTVD) -- A group of North Carolina emergency managers left to Puerto Rico Friday morning to assist with recovery efforts after Hurricane Maria.

A six-person team gathered at the state Emergency Operations Center in Raleigh after 5 a.m. ahead of their flight.

Right now, three teams from North Carolina are assisting with emergency operations in Puerto Rico.

A team of 10 is helping at the main emergency operations center in San Juan.

Two 6-person teams are staffing emergency operations centers in mountainous regions, hard hit by the storm.

Callion Maddox, of North Carolina Emergency Management, is going to the island to assist with emergency operations for a second time. He said helping Puerto Rico ultimately helps North Carolina.

"It's also a learning experience for us to bring back whatever knowledge we can and experiences we can to help us, North Carolina, become more resilient should a Category 5 or 4 hurricane hit North Carolina," Maddox said. "I think some of the experiences and the after-actions that come from our experiences will help us become a more resilient state."

The team leaving Friday will work through the Thanksgiving holiday and return home December 3. Another group is expected to return Sunday.

In addition to North Carolina Emergency Management, agencies such as the North Carolina National Guard and State Highway Patrol have been assisting in Puerto Rico.