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Civil Air Patrol Photo reconnaissance flights underway in Texas


Civil Air Patrol aircraft returned to the skies over Texas to provide support for the state of Texas and the Federal Emergency Management Agency as part of their response to Hurricane Harvey.


Two aircraft flew out of San Marcos Regional Airport this morning to take photographs over Corpus Christi and Rockport. An additional six aircrews are assigned to photograph flooding along the Upper and Lower Brazos, the Colorado River and Houston Bayou.


The state and FEMA have tasked CAP members to take photos of key infrastructure and resources over areas ravaged by the Category 4 hurricane and its torrential rains. Both agencies will use the imagery to assess damage in these hard-hit areas.


U.S. Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, visited Civil Air Patrol’s incident command post in San Antonio today for a briefing on air operations.


“It really is an activity about saving people’s lives, and is an efficient use of federal dollars .., the bang for the buck is quite high,” the congressman said.


CAP members continue to arrive from throughout the country to help.


“So far 12 aircraft have arrived from other CAP wings,” said Lt. Col. Rick Woolfolk, incident commander, as well as transportation officer for the Louisiana Wing.


Planes from Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma and South Dakota have arrived at staging areas in San Marcos and San Antonio in support of the mission.


“We are pleased with the outpour of support from other wings,” said Col. Sean Crandall, Texas Wing commander. “Civil Air Patrol members from Texas and neighboring wings have a lifetime of skills and are doing an excellent job. They are true professionals!”


Over 170 CAP volunteers from 19 states are helping support air operations.


Civil Air Patrol, the longtime all-volunteer U.S. Air Force auxiliary, is the newest member of the Air Force’s Total Force. In this role, CAP operates a fleet of 560 aircraft, performs about 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 80 lives annually.


CAP’s 57,000 members also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies.


CAP also plays a leading role in aerospace/STEM education, and its members serve as mentors to 24,000 young people participating in CAP’s Cadet Programs. Visit www.GoCivilAirPatrol.com