Florida National Guard Sets Out to Help in Dennis Relief Effort

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Tractor trailers loaded with ice, tarps and generators are getting ready to head out along the Florida Panhandle. The drivers come from all over the country.

Bobby Ervin is a trucker from Oklahoma City and says, "Hopefully we’ll be able to help whoever’s going to need it. That’s the big thing. I volunteered for this, to come out and help. I was here on the last one when all the last ones came through."

2600 National Guard soldiers are also getting their marching orders to assist with police duties and distribute food, water and comfort to Dennis’ victims.

State officials say there are many people in need. Law enforcement officers from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission describe dramatic rescues in Franklin and Wakulla Counties.

COL Julie Jones of the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says, "When the waters came up, some people panicked, so we had people who were isolated. We did have some downed buildings. There were some structures on the waterward side of Highway 98 that are gone."

And the danger’s still out there. Lt. Gov. Toni Jennings is urging people to play it safe and be patient.

Lt. Gov. Toni Jennings, (R) Florida, says, "Understand that the power will probably be off and things that you will need to deal with, whatever damage is there, chances are it’s going to be hard to get that for at least a few hours to a day or so.”

She hopes people will take comfort in knowing help is on the way.