Experience had shown that bulky fire-rescue trucks, standard police cruisers or regular ambulances just didn't stand a chance once roads were severely obstructed or flooded.
Again and again, Robert Kamski, a 30 year volunteer veteran with the Red Cross organization, pointed out that a first-response team to natural disasters should be better equipped and supplied with more adequate vehicles than present rescue teams.
Robert Kamski visualized a flexible, small first response team, much like the THW (Technical Aid Works) in Germany, equipped with agile AWD military-style vehicles, which are smaller, narrower and with much better ground clearance than standard rescue vehicles.
Searching for it he came across the "Pinzgauer", a light military truck made in Austria for the Austrian and Swiss army. It was designed for rough mountainous terrain with steep ravines and narrow paths and roads. But because of its capacities it is also ideal to be taken into any other difficult-to-access area, e.g. a hurricane or tornado devastation zone.
After a family friend almost lost her life during hurricane Wilma in 2005, just because ambulances couldn't get through to take her to a hospital, Robert Kamski, a North Miami Beach resident for over 20 years, went to work.
He founded the not-for-profit organization called T.A.C (Technical Aid Convoy) and bought the first "Pinzgauer". Using his own resources and with the contributions of relatives, friends and
businesses, 2 more were bought shortly after. Today these 3, a command vehicle, an ambulance, as well as a tool and equipment carrier (a.k.a. The Toaster) are the TAC Convoy.
In 2006 Mr. Kamski received "The President's Volunteer Service Award" in Silver for his work with The Red Cross. His longtime Commitment for The Red Cross was recognized with the "Lifetime Achievement Award" by The President's Council in 2007.
"I have often been asked, why I am doing this work" Mr. Kamski commented. "For me it is a way of saying a big "Thank You" to the American People for letting me be a guest in this country". Robert Kamski, a German citizen, is living in The United States as a business man for many years.
The TAC, Technical Aid Convoy Florida, Inc., is a 100% volunteer, non-profit 501(c)-3
Public Charity (N08000004824) providing First Response Technical Support in case of catastrophic events and natural disasters, like hurricanes.
The TAC is solely dispatched by The American Red Cross and FEMA.
Fundraising proceeds go directly to TAC in full, contributing to gas, batteries, first-aid supplies, tarps, important technical equipment and the maintenance of the all-terrain Pinzgauer vehicle fleet.