Aug 31, 2021 - News

Arkansas National Guard called to help after Ida

First responders rescue a resident from floodwater left behind by Hurricane Ida in LaPlace, Louisiana, on Aug. 30. Photo: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images

More than 500 Arkansas National Guard members will go to Louisiana in the next two days to help those affected by Hurricane Ida, the state’s National Guard spokesperson Bob Oldham tells Axios.

What's happening: Gov. Asa Hutchinson approved an initial deployment of 575 National Guard members, his spokesperson Shealyn Sowers tells Axios.

  • Sowers said Monday that 40 civilians were on the way to help with search and rescue efforts, and two emergency management planners were already in Louisiana working as liaisons between the states and coordinating emergency response.

Details: National Guard members of the 142nd Field Artillery Brigade (most of whom live in NWA) will assist with high-water vehicle recovery to help people who are stranded because of floods to safety.

  • Members of the 39th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (who live across the state) will assist with route clearance, such as removing trees and debris from roads, Oldham says.
  • National Guard members may also help with traffic control.
  • Louisiana requested Arkansas' help, Oldham says.

Context: Hurricane Ida made landfall in Louisiana on Sunday, the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

  • This latest storm, among the strongest hurricanes to strike Louisiana, has left many residents without power, some unaccounted for and evacuees unable to return home.

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