Urban Search & Rescue
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  • Superstorm Sandy

    Posted on November 8th, 2012 MA-TF 1 No comments

    As Hurricane Sandy turned into Superstorm Sandy, MA-TF 1 was activated by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to stand at the ready as a state asset.

    After the storm passed, MA-TF 1 was activated as a federal team and deployed to New York.

    MA-TF 1 joined several other US&R teams and conducted search and rescue operations in and around New York City for several days.

    Massachusetts Task Force 1 wishes all of the people affected by Sandy the very best during the difficult recovery to come. Several members of the team are returning to New York as part of other relief efforts.

    Photojournalist Robert Scott Button embedded with MA-TF 1 and created a short film of the journey.


    Sandy from Robert Scott Button on Vimeo.

    You can view this film on his Vimeo Channel here.

  • Western Massachusetts Tornado Flyover

    Posted on June 22nd, 2011 MA-TF 1 No comments

    Last week, members of MA-TF 1 had the opportunity to fly over the path of the Tornado for photographic documentation. This was done in conjunction with FEMA Region 1 and the New Hampshire Civil Air Patrol. The flight traveled from East to West (in the opposite direction of the Tornado’s progression). The aircraft was located north of the path, so most photos are taken facing south.

    The first mission that MA-TF 1 undertook on the night of June 1 was to search for survivors and document structural damage in the Six Corners area of Springfield, MA. This is the triangular area in the photo below :

    From TornadoOverflight

    The second mission MA-TF 1 undertook was to search for survivors and document structural damage in the Union St. area of West Springfield, MA. This is the area below the rail yard in the photo below:

    From TornadoOverflight


    Photos of the the entire path of the Tornado can be seen here:


  • March 2010 Flooding RNA Response

    Posted on April 10th, 2010 MA-TF 1 No comments

    A massive storm brought record rainfall to New England in March, which resulted in record breaking high water marks and flooding. As part of the FEMA Response, a 20-person modular component of MA-TF 1 was activated to assist with Rapid Needs Assessment in the hardest hit parts of Rhode Island. MA-TF 1 worked with Rhode Island’s state Urban Search and Rescue Team RITF-1 and the US Coast Guard to assist in ground based and aerial assessments of damaged areas.

    Below are some photos from the team’s response.