Local disaster relief teams standing by to aid in KY tornado clean up efforts

Midwest Tornadoes
Posted at 2:53 PM, Dec 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-11 22:22:44-05

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - The hardest hit areas following a night of deadly tornadoes in Kentucky will have Hampton Roads-based help if needed.

Kentucky's governor says at least 70 are feared dead in what he's calling "the most devastating tornado event in our state’s history."

Virginia Task Force 2, one of 28 FEMA urban search and rescue teams across the country, says it has not been contacted yet, but members are standing by in case the call comes in. The task force is made up of firefighters from several local departments.

Task Force Leader and Virginia Beach Fire Captain Jon Rigolo tells News 3 that, so far, only Indiana Task Force has been called.

"Once they get there, they will make contact with area officials and those officials will give them areas of concern," he said over FaceTime. "They're going to bring with them search specialists [and] rescue specialists that can stabilize the collapsed buildings and search the collapsed buildings."

In Virginia Beach, faith-based non-profit Operation Blessing is known for responding to disasters.

Spokesperson Chris Roslan says the organization is in contact with Kentucky-based emergency management offices to help assess the situation in hard-hit areas.

Volunteers will be ready to depart should it be determined that help is needed.

This is a developing story. Stay with News 3 for updates.