Gallery: Military Prepares for Landfall of Florence Like Well-Oiled Machine


As Hurricane Florence inches closer to landfall, civilians have shuttered their homes and evacuated.  There are some, however, who can’t flee the oncoming storm.

Although over 1 million have already fled the coast, there is still much to be done before the storm arrives. Only essential crews and those who chose not to comply with the mandatory evacuation are staying.

The military is one of those essential services. The men and women of our armed forces have been working tirelessly to move equipment, stage rescue gear, and prepare for the worst. All branches have equipment and personnel affected by the storm, and each is responding in its own way.

(All photos in this article are from Department of Defense sources, and were hosted on Defense Information Distribution Service.)

Air Force and Air National Guard

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The Air Force arguably has it the easiest. The ability to literally fly away seems to make evacuation of equipment slightly easier.

In these photos, airmen from South Carolina Air National Guard’s 169th Fighter Wing are seen moving F-16s to areas away from the storm.

Army and Army National Guard

At Fort Bragg, North Carolina, the 82nd Airborne Division has already begun prepping essential supplies and water while placing sandbags at critical points.

The South Carolina National Guard’s 118th Forward Support Company is already anticipating relief efforts, and is shown preparing diesel fuel for transport and distribution. More than 1,500 soldiers and airmen have been activated to respond to Florence.


Nearly 30 ships at Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, have been given “sortie code alpha,” and have been slowly filtering out of the base. They plan to weather the storm at sea, where they can more easily avoid the worst of it.

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Mercy-class hospital ship USNS Comfort is also pictured departing. Hospital ships are able to provide emergency health care and support from a floating base of operations.


Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina, is also in the path of the storm. Recruits will be shipped to Georgia, where they will continue their training until the evacuation order is lifted.

Marines at Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, have begun preparing their storm shelters as well. Hurricane safe rooms will provide a haven for Marines, their families, and any civilian support left.

Coast Guard

The Coast Guard is possibly the most affected by the storm, having to avoid damage to equipment while simultaneously positioning for imminent humanitarian and rescue missions. Stations across the coastal region are shuffling assets to dodge the storm.

Ships, planes, and helicopters are all being serviced and moved in anticipation of the recovery efforts after the storm.

Hurricane Florence is now expected to make landfall Friday afternoon, according to CNN, although weather models vary on the exact location and severity. President Donald Trump has tweeted about the storm, and has readied federal and state agencies to act.

As these photos show, the United States military in the affected areas is being careful.

And getting ready.

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Jared has written more than 200 articles and assigned hundreds more since he joined The Western Journal in February 2017. He was an infantryman in the Arkansas and Georgia National Guard and is a husband, dad and aspiring farmer.
Jared has written more than 200 articles and assigned hundreds more since he joined The Western Journal in February 2017. He is a husband, dad, and aspiring farmer. He was an infantryman in the Arkansas and Georgia National Guard. If he's not with his wife and son, then he's either shooting guns or working on his motorcycle.
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