Local Coast Guard Members Heading to Gulf

September 27, 2013 Updated Jun 3, 2010 at 5:50 PM EDT

By Jennifer Stanonis

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September 27, 2013 Updated Jun 3, 2010 at 5:50 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) -- More than thirty active and reserve members of the Coast Guard in Buffalo and a total of 149 people from the Great Lakes Coast Guard District are being sent to the Gulf to assist in the clean up efforts of the oil spill.

Large pieces of equipment are also being sent back and forth including a helicopter, an oil skimming vessel, and four air boats. "A vessel skimming system that can be put on the surface of the water and it takes the oil off the water," Lieutenant Brian Sadler, with the US Coast Guard in Buffalo, said. "The air boats are of particular interest because we usually only use those during the winter for ice rescue operations. However they're a great platform for shallow water, marshland areas, and they'll be utilized in the Gulf in helping move people and equipment around in the shallow areas of the marshlands."

Crews are expected to stay down south for an extended period of time but it's unclear just how long.