'Good neighbours': Canada sends flood relief supplies to Texas
Jeff Lagerquist, CTVNews.ca
Published Sunday, September 3, 2017 3:16PM EDT
Ottawa is delivering humanitarian supplies to the flood-ravaged U.S. Gulf Coast.
The Defence Department said a Royal Canadian Air Force Hercules transport plane loaded with baby formula, blankets, cribs, and other necessities took off from CFB Trenton on Sunday, destined for Lackland Air Force Base, near San Antonio, Texas.
“Like all good neighbours, Canada and the United States are there for each other in times of crisis,” Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said in a media release.
The aid effort follows a phone conversation between Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday. The two leaders are said to have discussed the damage caused by the torrential rains that flooded vast swaths of Texas.
The official account of the call released by the White House stated that Trump thanked Trudeau and the people of Canada for their condolences and offer of assistance, saying the gesture “underscored the close ties between our two nations.”
Sajjan said the Canadian Armed Forces will continue to work with other branches of the government to coordinate support with U.S. partners in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Hurricane Harvey made landfall in southeastern Texas on Aug. 25 as a Category 4 storm. An estimated 44 people have been killed, more than one million people have been displaced, and nearly 200,000 homes have been damaged.
On Sunday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott estimated Harvey has caused as much as US$180 billion in damage, a figure surpassing damage estimates for both Katrina and Sandy.
The Trump administration has asked the U.S. Congress for an initial $7.85 billion for recovery efforts, which Abbott called a “down payment.”
With files from The Canadian Press and The Associated Press