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"We've identified forces totaling about 30,000", he said, of potential troops for Florida.

A very important part of the plan involves the National Guard. Not only are we the primary combat reserve of our nation's Army and Air Force, we are also the nation's first military responder in times of emergency.

In Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands the Coast Guard could just go as needed.

Approximately 425 soldiers are expected to deploy as early as Monday to the west side of southern Florida where they are likely to provide humanitarian assistance and security.

The U.S. Consulate General in Curacao said it believes about 6,000 Americans are stranded on St. Martin. The remaining 3,000 members are on traditional Guard duty this weekend.

"The National Guard stands trained and prepared to assist authorities protect lives and property", said Maj.

The Coast Guard not only has to respond to search and rescue operations, but also has to work to reset and maintain the shipping lanes in and around Florida, and reset the navigational markers in the area. They are arriving with boats, helicopters and special equipment to help with rescues.

National Guard deploys to Florida

Thousands of Florida National Guard members were deployed through the state to help residents as powerful Hurricane Irma nears. Other members of the task force have also traveled to Houston for Harvey relief efforts.

The team from the 106th will be transported south aboard two C-17 aircraft from the New York Air National Guard's 105th Airlift Wing based at Stewart Airport in the Town of Newburgh.

The group is assisting in recovery efforts in the wake of Hurricane Irma.

While he and his crew are hoping for the best, this mission calls for them to prepare for the worst.

The 105th Airlift Wing, which is based at Stewart Air National Base outside Newburgh, New York, committed 12 airmen to the Caribbean mission.

The ships were deployed late last month with hundreds of Marines and sailors aboard to respond to Hurricane Harvey in Texas, but could instead be sent to Florida.


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