Two Clermont firefighters, as of Wednesday, Aug. 26, are headed to Louisiana in response to the approaching Hurricane Laura, a reportedly major category 4 storm.
Clermont Fire Department Engineer Micah Warren and Lt. Jeremiah Plasters are deploying for up to 15 days as part of FL Urban Search and Rescue Taskforce 4. They are heading to the Baton Rouge area with 40 other highly skilled firefighters, 14-plus vehicles and a K9. In addition to search and rescue, this team also performs swift water rescue.
According to a press release from City of Clermont officials, Task Force 4 is a regional joint search-and-rescue group with members coming from fire rescue departments across Central Florida. Task Force 4 is often called upon not just locally, but elsewhere as well, and credited for helping thousands of lives in the aftermath of storms or catastrophic events.
Of his deployment, Lt. Jeremiah Plasters, who has served on Task Force 4 since 2011, says, “I am proud to represent Clermont and am grateful for the unique opportunity to serve other states and our country when called upon. Task Force 4 is a culmination of some of Central Florida’s most motivated, educated and hardworking USAR members.”
Engineer Micah Warren, who started on Task Force 4 in 2010, says, “Florida Task Force 4 has allowed me the opportunity to use my 800-plus hours of training, knowledge and experiences beyond local responses. It has been my platform to do what I love. As first responders, we desire to help others. We are willing to put our lives on hold to put others’ first. We have committed ourselves to working in dangerous conditions, risking everything so others may live. It will never matter who or where we are called to serve. We serve all. Louisiana has called for help and we are answering.”
In 2018, Lt. Jeremiah Plasters and several other Clermont firefighters were deployed to the Panhandle for a life-saving mission post-Hurricane Michael.