An inside look at how the Coast Guard is coordinating Harvey relief from New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS -- The U.S. Coast Guard is hard at work at the New Orleans Command Center downtown in the Big Easy.

The center is being used by the U.S. Coast Guard Crisis Action Team to help coordinate Harvey search and rescue efforts in Texas and Southwest Louisiana.

In all, 52 Coast Guard personnel from New Orleans and around the country are coordinating logistics and information as part of the rescue and response efforts for the floods.

Rear Adm. Paul Thomas, commander of the 8th Coast Guard District, says he and his crew would love to be in the field working to rescue those in the flooded areas, but they know their job in New Orleans is just as important.

"The fact is for every swimmer in the water there are three people in the aircraft above them, and for every aircraft that's in the air, there's five back at the hangar maintaining the aircraft, and for all those people that are at the hangar, they are only there because of the work that these guys are doing (at the New Orleans Command Center) to keep them well supplied and safe. So everyone's pitching in," Thomas said.

To this day, the U.S. Coast Guard has rescued over 4,500 people and over 1,000 animals from rising water, and that number is still growing.