Local Search & Rescue Team Ready to Help in Colorado - 8 News NOW

Local Search & Rescue Team Ready to Help in Colorado

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LAS VEGAS -- Days of heavy rain has caused major flooding in northern Colorado, stranding people in isolated communities and leaving four people dead.

Nevada's Urban Search & Rescue Team was put on alert by the Federal Emergency Management Agency late last night to help and is ready to go to Colorado. The order to deploy to the area could come any minute.

The tractor trailers are full of equipment to take to the flooded area and bags filled with two weeks worth of clothing and safety gear are packed and ready to go.

Team members say one of the main tools they will use, if they go, are large aluminum boats to rescue people.

If the call comes to deploy, 80 team members will be heading to Colorado, and they will be on their way in less than six hours.

The task force is made up mostly of firefighters from Clark County, Las Vegas, Henderson, and North Las Vegas departments.

They train year round for multiple disaster scenarios, and can be sent anywhere in the country.

"It is more than standby, because frankly we're on standby 365 days a year. Alert means we need to be ready to go at a moments notice," program manger Mario Trevino said.

"This is the moment that we prepare for. Anyone who is on this team, the hours and days that they put in to preparation, now they have the opportunity to implement those skills," Clark County Fire Department Chief Bertral Washington said.

Earlier this week, 8 News NOW was there as Task Force 1 members trained to rescue victims caught in a building or highway collapse.

The unit is one of 28 teams throughout the country designated by FEMA to respond to natural or man-made disasters.

The task force was deployed three times in 2008. Its last alert was in 2010 during Hurricane Earl.

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