ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers St. Paul District currently has more than 20 employees deployed to support relief efforts in the wake of hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.
“At FEMA’s request, we provided personnel in Texas with engineering expertise to conduct assessments on critical public facilities such as wastewater treatment plans, fire departments and city offices to ensure the facilities are fully functional,” said Phil White, chief of emergency operations for the St. Paul District. “We currently have seven people in Texas.”
Originally, 200 personnel from the Corps’ Mississippi Valley Division, or MVD, of which St. Paul is one-of-six districts, were set to deploy to Texas.
“We were preparing for a large-scale housing operation in Texas,” White said. “But after Irma and Maria hit, the response effort was greatly expanded to Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.”
Of the remaining deployed, two personnel are in Florida, 14 in Puerto Rico and one in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“District employees continue to arrive in Puerto Rico to provide support for temporary roofing construction, quality assurance and debris management,” White said.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers estimates that 60,000 roofs are damaged in Puerto Rico.
The Corps, including the St. Paul District, will continue to deploy people until all of these missions are complete, White said.
In the coming weeks the MVD will provide additional employees to support efforts in Puerto Rico, and the St. Paul District will send five employees to perform quality assurance for the Task Force Power mission.
District personnel have joined more than 975 personnel from throughout USACE in supporting local, state and FEMA partners in Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The number one priority continues to be the life, health and safety of all who were affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
The nearly 600 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, employees working at more than 40 sites in five upper-Midwest states serve the American public in the areas of environmental enhancement, navigation, flood damage reduction, water and wetlands regulation, recreation sites and disaster response. Through the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2015 $100 million budget, nearly 1,600 non-Corps jobs were added to the regional economy as well as $155 million to the national economy. For more information, see www.mvp.usace.army.mil.