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Charlotte rescuers to help save victims trapped in Texas floods

Jason Dickson of the Charlotte Fire Department swift water rescue team carries a 1-year-old child as residents are evacuated from apartments on Southwest Boulevard on Aug. 5, 2011.
Jason Dickson of the Charlotte Fire Department swift water rescue team carries a 1-year-old child as residents are evacuated from apartments on Southwest Boulevard on Aug. 5, 2011. tsumlin@charlotteobserver.com

The Charlotte Fire Department is sending a swift water rescue team to College Station, Texas, on Thursday to help rescue victims trapped in Texas floods from Tropical Storm Harvey.

Four other teams from North Carolina also are being deployed to College Station to help in searches and rescues, the N.C. Department of Public Safety said Wednesday night. The five teams include a total of 92 members.

The Charlotte Fire Department team will leave at 10 a.m. from the Charlotte Police and Fire Training Academy at 1770 Shopton Road. Teams from the Greensboro Fire Department and Henderson County Rescue Squad will leave at the same time from the academy.

A Raleigh team that includes the Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill fire departments and a team from Fayetville will leave at 10 a.m. from the Raleigh Fire Training Center.

The state’s swift water rescue program is organized by N.C. Emergency Management. The state has 30 highly trained swift water rescue teams that meet national standards and can be deployed anywhere in North Carolina and across the country. The program started after Hurricane Fran in 1996.

“North Carolina has developed one of the most respected and tested swift water rescue programs in the country,” Mike Sprayberry, state emergency management director, said in announcing Thursday’s deployment to Texas. “These are well trained and experienced rescuers who will serve the state of Texas well.”

Joe Marusak: 704-358-5067, @jmarusak

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