Troops with the Kentucky National Guard reported to duty Sunday morning. They're heading south to assist communities in the Gulf Coast region that will be impacted by Hurricane Gustav.
In addition to soldiers, eight helicopters will be deployed from the Kentucky Guard. Some of those aircraft are equipped to hoist people who may be stranded due to flooding.
Commanders with the Guard say this deployment is different than the one they participated in following Hurricane Katrina three years ago. They say the plan is a more pro-active one that will allow help to arrive in hurricane-impacted communiteis sooner. Much of the response to Katrina was reactive in nature and took place well after the storm had passed.
The Kentucky Guard units will initially arrive in Meridian, Mississippi and then move on to Louisiana. Officials with the Guard say they're stationing east of the storm so that they can immediately move in behind it as it heads west.