Industry sends aid to those affected by Hurricane Harvey

By |  September 8, 2017 0 Comments

Glen Black, (in Green) president of GT AirInject stands with team members as they load up machines to ship to Houston.

Two companies are stepping up to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

GT AirInject plans to deliver four new Air2G2 Soil CPR machines to help renovate and restore more than 20 golf courses and sports fields in Texas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. The machines will be delivered next week to aid in the ongoing recovery of the Texas facilities.

GT AirInject will transport the machines to Texas on Sept. 11 for use at approximately 20 golf courses and numerous athletic fields. Golf courses and sports fields ranging from recreation, municipal and professional facilities, all sustained damage from flooding and compaction. The Air2G2 machine will inject air into the soil profile, open up pore space, increase percolation to move standing water through the soil column and help the turf recover. Turf managers who have expressed interest in utilizing the Air2G2 to help recover their turf from massive flooding, particularly in the Houston and southeast Texas region will be able to do so at no cost to them at least through October. The transport from Jacksonville to the Houston area is expected to take at least 48 hours and the shipping and usage will come at no expense to the facilities.

“I was on the phone with our Texas distributor, Jeff Kadlec, and we were on the same page about how we can help everybody that has been devastated in Houston and that area of Texas,” says Glen Black, the owner and president of GT AirInject. “The knowledge that I have of the turf industry and the great respect and friendship I have for superintendents for golf courses and athletic complex operators inspired me to do this for the first time. I know what these people go through is tough even in normal circumstances. Right now, these are far from normal circumstances and they’re encountering some tremendously difficult issues. I hope sending these machines can help alleviate some of those problems.”

Kadlec, owner and manager of GLK Turf Solutions in San Antonio, Texas, and an Air2G2 distributor, will coordinate the effort through his network of facilities via Twitter (@glkturftexas), the South Texas chapter of the Texas Golf Course Superintendents Associations and the Texas Sports Turf Managers Association. He is reaching out in the region for other facilities that require these services.

“We’re just in the infancy of helping here,” Kadlec says. “Some of these golf courses have greens completely under water and many folks haven’t been able to get back home to see what their recreation facilities or courses actually need. The goal is to go from course to course and facility to facility to help as many as we can, at least through the end of October or for as long as is needed.”

Turfgrass Producers International (TPI) staff have been working closely with TPI Board of Trustees member Keith Wittig, owner of Central Turf Farms and his family in Wharton, Texas, whose community was directly impacted by severe floods.

On Sept. 2nd, TPI Associate Executive Director Karen Cooper, who lives in New Braunfels, Texas, delivered 221 pounds of chicken, 20 bags of potato chips, 350 paper plates, napkins and plastic-ware to provide meals for over 200 first responders in the Wharton area on behalf of TPI.

The TPI board of directors and staff are currently assembling plans to assist Texas growers and their communities during this recovery. If you would like to help out in any way, please keep an eye out for future updates on TPI’s plans for assistance. You may also contact Casey Reynolds or Karen Cooper directly at 847.649.5555 or creynolds@turfgrasssod.org or kcooper@turfgrasssod.org for information on plans moving forward.

Photo: GT AirInject

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