DENVER (KDVR) — There are scores of people in Florida now trying to help people who have been left devastated by Hurricane Ian. Among them are several groups from Colorado.
As Ian made its way across Florida, leaving a trail of destruction, fleets of ambulances were seen mobilizing in Palm Beach Gardens to help people in trouble. Among the first responders was a man from Colorado who was captured on camera, helping with American Medical Response emergency vehicles.
The video was posted on Twitter. The unidentified man told WPBF TV reporter Tara Jakeway that he was from Colorado.
American Medical Response of Florida sent 14 team members from across Colorado to some of the worst hit areas in Florida. The national company has a massive team and large equipment to deal with disasters.
Before the storm, AMR staff helped evacuate residents and are now responding with search-and-rescue teams.
“We are working directly with FEMA to go to the hardest hit areas that need support and provide that to them,” AMR spokesperson Chris Stawasz said.
With more than 2 million people without electricity, Xcel Energy has sent 30 crew members to try and help get the power back on. The Xcel contract workers will help repair everything from downed power lines to damaged transformers.
“Often times, they are working out of emergency tents or barracks — things of that nature. You can imagine they are going into places that have been devastated by a weather event like this,” Xcel’s regional vice president of distribution operations Kris Farruggia said.
On Thursday, Red Cross workers from Colorado who are also in Florida began getting their deployment orders. They were loading supplies badly needed in devastated areas.
American Red Cross Colorado volunteer Kim Mailes, of Highlands Ranch, was getting ready to head out to help people impacted after Ian moved into Orlando overnight.
“The sky darkened, blackened. Things began to change quickly, and last night there was torrential rain, and it was coming down in sheets like I’ve never seen before,” Mailes said.
Colorado’s Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management also sent a team of about 13 people.
They will help to make sure emergency supplies get to where they are needed the most and as fast as possible.