MALVERN, Ark – Soldiers from the Arkansas National Guard are on patrol looking for anyone who may need help on these icy roads.
Members of the 216th Military Police Company out of Camp Robinson began their patrols among major interstates around 6 a.m. Thursday morning.
It’s not every day you see military Humvees on the highway.
But the ones seen on Interstate 30 near Malvern Thursday are loaded down with everything people may need to weather this storm, along with soldiers who chose to help.
“We were all volunteers,” said Sgt. Lauren Johnson with the Arkansas National Guard. “We all got called the day before. We packed a bag, and we were ready the next day.”
The soldiers are patrolling several counties near Hot springs and Malvern with the mission of assisting Arkansas State Police.
“Helping where they might need us, where their patrol cars are not equipped to kind of pull certain vehicles out,” Sgt. Johnson said.
They’re helping the public and they’re also on standby should emergency vehicles run into any issues.
“So far today, we’ve seen several vehicles that have been kind of stranded and abandoned in ditches,” Sgt. Johnson said. “There was a point this morning where one of our teams had to chop up a tree that had fallen into the interstate so that that didn’t impede further traffic.”
The soldiers said they’re always ready whenever help is needed
“Not everybody is able to do stuff like this and people need help,” said Sgt. Shelby Price. “So, when they call, we answer it and come and help people when we can.”
“Regardless of the mission at hand, we’re always on standby and always willing to help the community and our state however we can,” Sgt. Johnson said.
The Arkansas National Guard said they’ll likely be busier as the night goes on.
Their best advice is don’t drive if you don’t have to.