LUBBOCK, TX - On Monday morning, a group of ten Lubbock Police officers made the trip down to Katy to lend their support and travel down to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey.
Lt. Matt Doherty with the Lubbock Police Department is the commander of the unit heading down, which consists of one lieutenant, one sergeant and eight officers/corporals.
The team packed their bags and supplies with plans to first stop at the mall in Katy, however their schedule will move around depending on when/where they are needed.
“Our team sees this as an opportunity to go down and help, this could very easily be Lubbock experiencing a disaster. So we're happy to pitch in. We all see ourselves as a family, and as a team. So we're happy to help,” said Lt. Matt Doherty, who explained that many of the officers didn’t even find out they would be making the trip until early Monday morning when they got into work.
“Most of the people that are going today were on night shift last night, so the volunteers that are going today volunteered last night on shift, and then two of them actually came into their morning shift at 6:30 and volunteered to put everything on hold,” said Lt. Doherty.
While down in the Houston-area, they will be assisting with security measures at the various shelters, as well as offering any additional support as needed. Some of the supplies they took down with them consisted of food ,water, toiletries, bug spray and hand sanitizer.
Lt. Doherty said that he and his team realize they will be going into a very emotional disaster scene, but that given the nature of the job, that his team is prepared for anything.
“We’ll adjust whenever we get there you have to keep in mind, police officers deal with high stress and emotion every shift so these guys are well equipped to deal with that kind of thing and we'll just adjust to whatever the situation presents. We're really flexible.”
Because many of these officers had to leave last minute, that also means several had to leave behind family and children at a moment’s notice. However, Lt. Doherty explained that it’s thanks to the support of their family that they are able to respond to these situations where their help is desperately needed.
“Our families are a big part of that, they help us to be flexible and be at home whenever we can't be there.”
The team of ten will coordinate with Houston Police and the Texas Department of Public Safety upon their arrival.
Public Information Officer for LPD, Tiffany Pelt, said that in addition to Lubbock, some other West Texas police departments heading down to assist are Amarillo, Abilene and El Paso.
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