Maryland Governor Directs National Guard to Help Puerto Rico - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Maryland Governor Directs National Guard to Help Puerto Rico

Posted: 09/29/2017 15:38:00 -04:00 Updated:

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WBOC/AP)- Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is making National Guard resources available to help Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

The governor's directive on Friday came after conversations with the governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rossello, and other communications between staff-level officials.

“During my conversation with Governor Rossello, I offered the full support of the state of Maryland to Puerto Rico and all areas devastated by these recent storms,” Hogan said. “Maryland is fortunate to have been spared the worst effects of this hurricane season so far, and we stand ready to respond to those in desperate need of resources.”

Hogan has authorized the deployment of a 26-member detachment of the Maryland National Guard's 29th Combat Aviation Brigade. The governor's office said it will deploy for potentially 60 days to conduct water purification with two tactical systems that can each purify 1,200 gallons of water an hour.

Fresh water has been in critically short supply in Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria made landfall on Sept. 20. Putting their equipment to use, the National Guard members will be assigned with converting hazardous water into water that is safe for drinking, cooking, and hygiene.

Maryland now has a mission deployed to Florida to support response and recovery operations there. The state has recently completed five support missions in Texas and Florida following Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, respectively.

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