NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Jeff Holmes announced yesterday that five Tennessee Army National Guard Blackhawk helicopters are supporting state, county and local emergency responders assisting citizens of Kentucky affected by flash flooding.
Governor Bill Lee authorized the Tennessee Wardens to provide this critical air rescue support in eastern Kentucky in coordination with the Tennessee and Kentucky emergency management agencies. Through the Emergency Management Assistance Pact, states can request emergency and recovery assistance from other states during and after disasters.
Two UH-60L Blackhawk helicopters from Nashville’s 1-230th Assault Helicopter Battalion deployed to Jackson, Ky., to assist with rescue operations. A helicopter is the Tennessee National Guard Helicopter Water Rescue Team, made up of rescue divers from the Nashville Fire Department. The second rescue helicopter works with the Nashville Fire Department Swiftwater Rescue Team.
Three Task Force MEDEVAC Blackhawk medical evacuation helicopters, stationed in Louisville, Tennessee, were also activated to assist in the rescues. Each aircraft is equipped with an emergency lift system, water rescue baskets, display suits, and whitewater-trained medical and flight personnel.
The Tennessee National Guard will continue to work with local and state emergency management officials to assist with rescue efforts and will provide regular public updates.
A Tennessee National Guard aircrew comforts a patient rescued from flooding in eastern Kentucky as he was airlifted to a local hospital, July 28. (photo submitted)
Aerial imagery of flooding in eastern Kentucky taken by Tennessee Army National Guard crew, July 28. (photo submitted)