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118th PRIME POWER team to deploy in response to Hurricane Maria relief

Prime Power equipment from the 118th Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) waits on the tarmac at Berry Field Air National Guard Base, Nashville Tenn. on Oct 3, 2017.

Prime Power equipment from the 118th Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) waits on the tarmac at Berry Field Air National Guard Base, Nashville Tenn. on Oct 3, 2017. The 118th CES will deploy to provide stable power generation to support disaster relief emergency operations in Puerto Rico. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Danielle Hopkins)

Nashville, Tenn.- -- NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Airmen from the 118th Wing’s Civil Engineer Squadron, Tennessee Air National Guard, will deploy today, Oct. 4, 2017 in support of Hurricane Maria relief efforts. 16 Airmen will provide flexible stable power generation (PRIME POWER) to support disaster relief emergency operations in Puerto Rico.

There are only two PRIME POWER civil engineering units in the Air National Guard and Air Force and this is the first time a PRIME POWER unit has been deployed in response to natural disaster. The essence of PRIME POWER is to respond to national emergencies and provide commercial grade power, Anytime, Anywhere it is needed.

The PRIME POWER team will take eight 100 Kw mounted generators, electricians, power production personnel, emergency management personnel and heavy equipment operators to the area to restore power where needed.

“Puerto Rico has been devastated by Hurricane Maria and we are saddened at the loss of life and belongings. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the people of Puerto Rico. Our culture of preparedness allows us to be there when people need us most. Many members of our PRIME POWER team have literally trained for years to serve in this time of need. We ensure we are prepared so that when disaster hits, we can focus on helping those that need it.” said Lt. Col. James Hawkes, Commander, 118th Civil Engineer Squadron.

The National Guard is supplying Puerto Rico with the critical resources it needs. In just one day, 250,000 meals and 416,000 liters of water arrived, with more equipment and helicopters continuing come in from several states. Our priorities remain getting essential resources to affected communities, security, restoring power, critical infrastructure and communications.
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