By: Laura-Jane Hatcher (WRGA News)
Thousands of volunteers threw away their Super Bowl plans this weekend to help with the clean-up effort in Bartow County after Wednesday’s deadly EF-3 tornado devastated countless homes and businesses.
While only 400 people signed up, a report from Cartersville Medical Center claims some 1,600 volunteers came out Saturday to aid those affected by the twister in any way they could, whether that be clearing debris, removing trees or serving a hot, free meal. With so many crews crawling amongst rubble and wielding heavy, dangerous equipment, the hospital set-up a tent staffed with nurses, paramedics and firefighters to treat potential injuries. Their presence was greatly needed, as several volunteers were treated for laceration and puncture-wounds. One individual’s hand was crushed in the clean-up, and was referred to the Emergency Room.
The recovery effort was primarily organized by Team Rubicon, a group of military veterans and medical professionals who voluntarily dispatch to areas racked by disaster. On Thursday, the group launched what they call “Operation: Midnight Train,” sending a reconnaissance team to survey the stricken area, where they assessed 500 damaged structures. Rubicon then worked alongside Bartow Emergency Management and local churches to coordinate the day-long recovery effort.
If you missed the Saturday clean-up, volunteers are needed in Gordon County on Sunday. The recovery effort will begin at 8am, with volunteers asked to meet at Sonorville High School at 7340 Fairmount Highway in Calhoun.