JTF-50: Hawai‘i National Guard’s Fire Recovery Effort

Posted on Nov 30, 2023 in Featured, Latest Department News, Main, Newsroom, Office of the Governor Press Releases

State of Hawai‘i Adjutant General, Major General Kenneth Hara, Governor Josh Green, M.D., and the U.S. Department of Defense collaboratively established the Hawai‘i National Guard’s Joint Task Force-50 (HING JTF-50) within five days of
the Maui wildfires.

The JTF-50 is under the command of Brigadier General Stephen F. Logan, Deputy Adjutant General, and comprises a diverse coalition of responders including the Hawai‘i Army and Air National Guard, the Active Duty Army and Navy, and the U.S. Army Reserve.

The JTF-50 primarily focused on ensuring the safety and recovery of affected Maui residents, collaborating closely with Maui County emergency managers. JTF-50 has also been in close coordination with local first responders and Maui County emergency managers to ensure concerted efforts and efficient use of resources.

Approximately 250 HING personnel provided critical support to the Maui Police Department, staffing 21 traffic control points on the perimeter of Lahaina town. Personnel at the posts managed access and supported first responders and crucial organizations.

Photo courtesy: U.S. Army National Guard, Spc. Sean Walker

In the first few days of the response, HING’s efforts also ext­ended to fire suppression missions. The JTF-50 also leveraged the expertise of its very specialized unit, HING’s Chemical, Biological, Radiological/Nuclear, Emergency Force Package (CERFP) to support the search and recovery operations and
on-site decontamination procedures.

In addition to the HING missions, JTF-50’s contributions encompassed interisland sea and air transportation and supporting survey operations. The task force also facilitated the distribution of essentials, including more than 4,000 gallons of potable water and more than 470 gallons of fuel. JTF-50 has played a crucial role in support of many partnership agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency, and medical support groups.

The magnitude and long-term challenges posed by the wild­fires to Maui are immense and the effects of the fires will be felt for years to come. We appreciate the National Guard’s major roles in supporting Maui’s recovery efforts.