Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department
4100 Chain Bridge Rd, Fairfax, Virginia 22030
Phone: 703-246-3801, TTY: 711 and Fax:703-385-1687
Duty PIO (Weekends/After-hours): 703-280-0694
Media Information Line: 703-324-3000
The US Agency for International Development (USAID) deployed three members of Virginia Task Force 1 as an Americas Support Team (AST) to Haiti, Monday, September 8, 2008, in response to a request from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN/OCHA-Genève). The AST will join a group of international humanitarian assistance personnel from Latin America and Europe to provide assistance to Haiti as part of a United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) team. Haiti has been affected by Hurricanes Gustav, Hannah, and Ike.
Team members arrived September 8, 2008, in Port-au-Prince where they joined other assembled UNDAC personnel. The deployment is anticipated to last approximately two to three weeks.
The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department has a long-standing partnership with USAID in responding to specialized humanitarian assistance during international disasters, both natural and man-made. Past international missions include earthquake responses in Turkey, Taiwan, Pakistan, and Iran, as well as the U.S. Embassy bombing in Nairobi, and the Indian Ocean Tsunami.
The team is comprised of emergency managers and planners, physicians, and paramedics, and includes specialists in the fields of structural engineering, heavy rigging, collapse rescue, logistics, hazardous materials, communications, canine, and technical search. Virginia Task Force 1 maintains partnerships with USAID and the Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency for international and domestic response.
For more information, call Daniel L. Schmidt or Lieutenant Raúl G. Castillo, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, 703-246-3801 and TTY: 711. Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in all county programs, services and activities. Reasonable accommodations will be provided upon request.