Panama City, Fla. (October 12, 2018) – Team Rubicon, a veteran-led disaster response organization, has deployed a reconnaissance team to Panama City, Florida to start damage assessments and identifying communities where our services are needed most. To make an immediate impact, the recon team is equipped with chainsaw kits as well as a skid steer and has been assisting local officials with route clearance – providing benefit to first responders, residents and other agencies in the area.
So far, Team Rubicon’s recon team has cleared five roads in Panama City.
“During our response to Hurricane Florence, we identified there was a huge need for route clearance immediately after a disaster to allow first responders and aid to reach those in need and to help residents get back into their communities quicker,” said William Porter, National Planning Manager at Team Rubicon. “So, we worked quickly, built a route clearance capability and have launched it less than a month later in response to Hurricane Michael.”
The recon team anticipates continuing with initial route clearance and damage assessments for the next three days, at which point Team Rubicon plans to launch a larger operation to assist with on-going hurricane response and recovery efforts.
Residents affected by Hurricane Michael may request assistance through Crisis Cleanup at 1-800-451-1954. Services requested through Crisis Cleanup are not guaranteed to be completed by Team Rubicon, but volunteers with the organization are manning the hotline and routing requests to partnering relief agencies in the affected area.
Team Rubicon boasts an 85,000-strong, highly skilled volunteer force that helps communities stabilize and recover after a devastating natural disaster. Since its inception following the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Team Rubicon has responded to 310 disasters, including Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.
Through a strong communications infrastructure supported by our cutting-edge technological solutions, Team Rubicon volunteers efficiently and effectively respond to natural disasters and help families return to their homes as soon as possible. By giving military veteran volunteers the opportunity to continue their service through disaster response, Team Rubicon provides them an avenue to gain a renewed sense of purpose, community, and identity.