NEW YORK, NY (August 27, 2011) -- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has mobilized almost 2000 New York National Guard Troops and more Soldiers will come on duty on Sunday, August 28 as New York prepares for Hurricane Irene.
On Friday the governor announced that 900 New York Army and Air National Guard Soldiers and Airmen would be mobilized and deployed to Long Island, New York City and the Hudson Valley.
On Saturday afternoon, after visiting members of the 206th Military Police Company and the 109th Airlift Wing deploying from the Capital Region, the governor announced the mobilization and deployment of 1000 more Guardsmen and women, mostly to New York City.
"It is important to take every precaution as we prepare for the impact of Hurricane Irene," Governor Cuomo said. "I have deployed additional members of the New York National Guard to make sure the evacuation process runs smoothly and to help with the emergency response efforts
On Sunday another 300 Guard members, assigned to the 204th Engineer Battalion-with units in Binghamton, Buffalo, Horseheads, and Kingston-will deploy to Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh.
The additional members of the National Guard will be deployed to downstate New York, including Long Island, New York City, and the Hudson Valley. The members of the National Guard will assist with traffic control on bridges and tunnels, sandbagging operations at the World Trade Center site, evacuation shelter operations in New York City, the construction of barriers for railway yards and train tunnels, and other hurricane emergency efforts.
The members of the National Guard called up on Saturday came from the 1st Battalion 258th Field Artillery and 1st Battalion 69th Infantry, which are headquartered in New York City and have elements on Long Island and in the Hudson Valley, along with the 101st Signal Battalion, which is headquartered in Yonkers and has companies in Orangeburg and Peekskill. Elements of the New York Naval Militia, which is comprised of Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard Reservists, will also be called up to assist. The 88th Brigade of the New York Guard, the state's volunteer defense force, will also assist in this effort.
If necessary a total of 12,466 Airmen and Soldiers with more than 680 vehicles; 16 Army National Guard UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters; and 4 Ch-47 Chinook helicopters; along with 10 C-130 cargo aircraft and 6 HH-60 Pavehawk rescue helicopters assigned to the Air National Guard are ready to respond.
"We want to thank the members of the Guard for their service and their sacrifice as they head out this morning for New York City and Long Island," Gov. Cuomo said.
National Guard Soldiers and Airmen began moving to Long Island, New York City, and the Camp Smith Training Site near Peekskill in the Hudson Valley from locations across the state Saturday morning. Convoys and buses left from the Albany area, Auburn, Utica, Syracuse and Queensbury and Airmen from western New York flew into the Hudson Valley.