DES MOINES, Iowa —The Iowa National Guard, in conjunction with the office of Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt.Gov. Kim Reynolds, the state Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, and many local, state and federal entities, is providing assistance, coordination, planning, and preparation in support of flood relief operations in southeast Iowa.
Due to recent heavy rains, the Cedar River and many streams are at, or above, flood levels, engulfing several Iowa communities and forcing many Iowans out of their homes. With additional thunderstorms occurring in Iowa during the past weekend, there are heightened concerns for the safety and security of Iowans. More than a dozen of Iowa’s 99 counties have been declared state disaster areas.
Just as they did during record floods in 1993, 2008 and 2010, Iowa’s citizen-soldiers and airmen have responded quickly in assisting Iowa communities as part of their state mission, partnering with federal, state, county and local officials.
Maj. Gen. Timothy Orr, the adjutant general of the Iowa National Guard, said: “Based on the information Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management has shared with the Joint Operations Center, I have made a decision to bring in 11 Iowa National Guard liaisons to work with County Emergency Management Coordinators for early identification of possible National Guard missions, and to anticipate where support may be needed to prevent loss of life and critical infrastructure.
“We have activated a total of 11 county liaisons/Guard Emergency Situational Awareness Contacts (GESAC). They are located in Floyd, Bremer, Blackhawk, Buchanan, Cedar, Linn, Butler, Johnson, Louisa, and Muscatine Counties.
“Additionally, three Incident Awareness and Assistance (IAA) Teams were activated on Saturday, and placed in Cedar Falls/Waterloo and Cedar Rapids, with another team to be placed as needed. These are current Iowa National Guard members who work in two-person teams, conducting eyes-on assessments and reporting to our Joint Operations Center.
“We continue to be proactive in anticipating and planning for possible requests for support that come to us from Homeland Security and Emergency Management, which has the lead in coordinating the state’s response efforts. We’ll continue active monitoring of the conditions in the state that could require response coordination, as well as, ongoing assessments and planning for response missions that may be appropriate for the Iowa National Guard.”
Also, approximately 400 Iowa National Guard soldiers will be mobilized to provide support to local law enforcement at 75 Evacuation Control Points in Cedar Rapids and Palo starting Monday. The soldiers are assigned to the following units (unit location in parentheses):
– 1034th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion (Johnston)
– 3654th Maintenance Company (Knoxville/Oskaloosa)
– 1133rd Transportation Company (Mason City/Iowa City)
– 1168th Transportation Company (Perry/Marshalltown/Audubon)
– 294th Medical Company (Washington)
– Company A, 334th Brigade Support Battalion (Johnston/Cedar Rapids/Oelwein)
– Company B, 224th Brigade Engineer Battalion (Davenport)
Additional releases about Iowa National Guard response efforts will be updated on a continuous basis as more information becomes available.
For questions concerning this release as well as additional information about the operations, training, and activities of the Iowa Army and Air National Guard, please contact Col. Greg Hapgood, Iowa National Guard public affairs officer by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or (515) 252-4582 (office) or (515) 971-6385 (cell), or contact Master Sgt. Duff E. McFadden at email@example.com or (515) 252-4666 (office), or (515) 480-7647 (cell).