Missouri has several organizations that have mobilized for Florence, a category 4 hurricane expected to leave mass destruction this week on the southeast U.S. coast.
Task Force One based in mid-Missouri’s Columbia has deployed 50 members and 100,000 pounds of equipment to Raleigh, North Carolina as part of its emergency response effort.
Meanwhile, southwest Missouri’s Convoy of Hope Wednesday deployed an advance team from its Springfield headquarters to assess the storm.
It’ll dispatch a larger group Thursday of about 15 people in a dozen vehicles that’ll bring food and water as well as generators, cleaning supplies and personal hygiene kits.
Jeff Nene with Convoy of Hope told KOLR-TV that Hurricane Florence is a much more dangerous storm than the recent Tropical Storm Gordon, which caused moderate damage along the gulf coast.
“The difference between Gordon and Florence is night and day,” said Nene. “With Florence, she knows where she wants to go and she’s headed there in a hurry.”
The emergency response organization told KOLR it has new equipment it’s sending to help with Florence, including a mobile housing unit that can sleep 19 people and a mobile kitchen unit. The kitchen will provide food for workers so that donated food can be used exclusively to help hurricane victims.
Nene told KOLR he thinks cleanup efforts could be tough if Hurricane Florence reaches land at maximum strength.
“If it hits at a cat 4, there is going to be significant wind damage along the coast and inland a ways,” Nene said. “But when it hits, it’s going to slow down and it’s going to dump a ton of rain.”
The Nonprofit, faith-based humanitarian organization says it’ll be working closely with local, state and federal officials in its emergency response.
“We’ve started making phone calls and touching base with people we can partner with along the coast there,” said Nene.
Convoy of Hope is part of the missions arms of the Springfield-based Assembly of God church.
KOLR-TV contributed to this report