Missouri Task Force 1 deployed to assist in Colorado flooding

80 members in Colorado helping search and rescue efforts

POSTED: 10:52 AM CDT Sep 15, 2013    UPDATED: 07:40 PM CDT Sep 16, 2013 
COLUMBIA, Mo. -

Missouri Task Force 1 has been deployed to Colorado to assist with search and rescue efforts after historic flooding in the state.

The force, which is based in Boone County, received the call to deploy at 10 p.m. Saturday and left Columbia around 3:30 a.m. Sunday.

The group got to their base Sunday night at Ranch-Larimer County Fairgrounds in Loveland, Colo.

At around 8 a.m. Monday, search crews headed out to Fort Collins Air Field to start operations. Their current focus will be west of Loveland, near Estes Park and Big Thompson Canyon.

Members of the task force are working with search and rescue crews and deputies from Larimer County, Colo.

On Monday, five teams were deployed by air throughout the county. Some are searching wide areas and others are working to evacuate people or provide humanitarian assistance.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency put the local force on standby earlier this week for rescue efforts in Colorado. The group was told to prepare for water rescues and to bring additional flood rescue equipment.

Task force teams from Nebraska, Utah and Nevada have already been called to help in search and rescue efforts.

Missouri's Task Force 1 (MO-TF1) is taking 80 team members, 17 vehicles, four disaster search K-9 units and more than 100,000 pounds of specialty equipment to Colorado. They are expected to remain there for up to two weeks.

MO-TF1 is one of just 28 specialized urban search and rescue teams in the country.

The force has previously been sent to assist in major disasters such as the World Trade Center terrorist attacks in 2001 and Hurricane Katrina in 2005.