Forward Watch

Forward Watch, August 31: Hurricane Laura

50 Greyshirts have deployed to Louisiana to take part in Operations Fury Road and Crying Eagle.

Situation Report 

The Crisis Cleanup line is active. Homeowners can call 844-965-1386 to request assistance from NGOs like Team Rubicon. Over one thousand homeowners have already had their requests for assistance answered on this line. 

Hurricane Laura caused 14 deaths in southwestern Louisiana. Currently 17,000 residents are evacuated and staying in non-congregate shelters. 

Damage from the storm has already caused an estimated $8 billion-$12 billion in insured losses. 

The storm’s high winds destroyed 500 transmission towers leaving roughly 350,000 people without electricity and hundreds of dangerous downed powerlines strewn across the area. Electricity companies say it could take up to four weeks for residents to get their power turned back on.    

How Team Rubicon is Responding 

Team Rubicon has deployed 50 Greyshirts to the Lake Charles metro area to respond to the devastation caused by Hurricane Laura. That number will be doubled in the coming days as billeting is secured and the scope of work is clarified. 

Route Clearance: Operation Fury Road  

Team Rubicon’s route clearance teams are providing direct support to emergency servicescutting paths through fallen trees and debris so that first responders can access neighborhoods isolated by the storm. 

Several house fires have ignited when power was turned back on in an unoccupied home, and firefighters have not been able to respond because of blocked roads. To better assist with this public safety issue, Team Rubicon’s route clearance teams will begin taking taskings from the Lake Charles Fire Department. 

Core Disaster Relief Capabilities: Operation Crying Eagle 

Team Rubicon continues to build out and staff two forward operating bases as Greyshirts arrive in Lake Charles. 

Damage assessments of the area have determined the need for tree removal, roof repair, and demolition of condemned structures. To meet the demand for advanced saw work, Team Rubicon is preparing to provide “just in time” extra sawyer training for Greyshirts on the operation. 

Leadership within Team Rubicon has predicted that this will be a multi-week to multi-month operation dependent on the federal response and the ability to muster sufficient resources.  


David Burke, Team Rubicon’s VP of Programs & Field Operations, and Jeff Byard, Team Rubicon’s VP of Government Relations & Emergency Management, are on the ground in Louisiana working to further connections with local parish leadership and the Lake Charles Fire Department.  

To support Team Rubicon’s response to Hurricane Laura, please donate today.