More Chicago area firefighters headed to Louisiana for Hurricane Ida recovery efforts

Chicago News

ADDISON, Ill. — More Chicago area firefighters are heading to Louisiana to help after Hurricane Ida.

Nearly 70 firefighters from about 30 different departments will be leaving Tuesday morning. They are part of a strike team that will help fill in for other fire departments in Louisiana.

On Tuesday night, about 50 area firefighters returned after spending six days in the New Orleans area. They were part of the Illinois Urban Search and Rescue Team and spent about a week in Louisiana after Hurricane Ida hit.

While they were on the ground they helped people get food, water and oxygen. They also did a lot of surveying of damage so FEMA and the Red Cross would know where to focus their help. They said damage was widespread and the heat was suffocating.

“Being in Louisiana heat we were looking at humidity up to 100 percent heat index was over 100. So for people down there with no power, and us interacting a couple of days in, you really start to see the effects it has on them and it’s tough to see,” said Jim McIntyre of the Schaumburg Fire Department.

It could be weeks before power is restored in some areas.

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