Photo/Story Gallery 2007

FHP Escorts Governor Crist After the Storm

FHP transporting Governor Charlie Crist to tornado-devastated areas so he can assess the damage.Immediately following the early morning tornadoes that swept through Central Florida on February 2, 2007, troopers were sent into areas devastated by the tornadoes to participate in three-man search and rescue teams. In most cases, the teams consisted of a Lake County deputy, an FWCC (Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission) officer, and a Florida Highway Patrol trooper. Seven of the teams systematically combed the Lake Mac area of eastern rural Lake County, searching for survivors and those who were killed by the early morning tornadoes. Later, troopers were needed to set up security checkpoints and direct traffic in and out of the affected areas.

When Governor Charlie Crist arrived on the scene via helicopter, he wanted to get a closer look at the damage and to talk with some of the survivors of the storms. However, with all of the debris on the roadways, no vehicle was immediately available that could safely transport the Governor through the wreckage. Thanks to the quick thinking of Public Affairs Officer Jorge Delahoz, an appropriate FHP vehicle was made available and Governor Crist was escorted by the Patrol to numerous sites so he could see first-hand what had happened and what needed to be done to help those affected by the tornadoes.

We appreciate all of our troopers who responded to the call for help, working long hours and facing numerous challenges while assisting fellow Floridians who lost their homes, neighbors, and loved ones in this recent disaster.

Trooper Earl Collins working a check point after completing a search and rescue mission.
Trooper Earl Collins works a check point
after completing a search and rescue mission.

Trooper Kevin Brown working a security checkpoint.
Trooper Kevin Brown works
a security checkpoint.

Trooper Craig Coleman working a checkpoint
Trooper Craig Coleman works a checkpoint