Gov. Tim Walz deployed a group of eight Minnesota first responders to Florida on Friday to aid communities hit by Hurricane Ian.
The governor received a request from Florida officials for help, according to a news release from his office. The team is comprised of highly trained public safety professionals belonging to the Minnesota All Hazards Incident Management Team (MN-AHIMT).
In Florida, the team will support field and emergency operations, support and coordinate response and recovery efforts and provide a command-and-control infrastructure to manage safety issues, according to the release.
"Minnesotans have always stepped up to help out their neighbors in times of need," Walz wrote in the release. "Hurricane Ian has devastated homes, businesses, and communities, and Minnesota is committed to helping the affected communities in any way possible."
MN-AHIMT was deployed to Key West in 2017 to assist with Hurricane Irma recovery efforts. The team also responded to flooding in Koochiching County in northern Minnesota earlier this year.
"When disasters strike, Minnesotans don't hesitate to step up to the plate and help others on their worst days," said Joe Kelly, director of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Homeland Security and Emergency Management. "Traveling for days and spending time away from families in a disaster area will not be easy for this team — but it's the right thing to do."