SAR DAY 2018 – SARTEAM

December 2, 2018 in Exercise Simulation by Administrator

SAR DAY is an annual event that brings together national and international special rescue teams to train together.  This year, SAR DAY 2018’s objective was to train rescuers in a situation similar to that which occurred in Thailand relating to a cave rescue. All possible difficulties were simulated, from the great operational and logistical challenges, communication inside the cave, water pumping and cave diving. There were over 150 operational participants in this edition, operating as part of specialized teams in cave rescue, within the participant national authorities as well as part of local and federal speleologists.

The simulation exercised the application of voice communication and transfer of images from the interior of the cave to the whole world via WEB, which demonstrated the capacity of present-day communication systems and how these can be put to use during rescue scenarios.

Despite that it became clear that this specific field (rescue in speleology) is not well established within the international rescue community, a point that was raised directly by SAR DAY 2018 participants, the exercise was another positive and successful one.

Francisco Rocha
SARTEAM Commander

Editor’s comment:
SAR DAY is organised on an annual basis by SARTEAM, a volunteer rescue team based in Portugal.  SARTEAM is the lead team for Portugal within EVOLSAR.

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BUDAPEST US&R 18 – OPVE

October 30, 2018 in Exercise Simulation by Administrator

In October 2018, a large scale exercise was held in Budapest involving over 150 volunteer and professional USAR, First Aid, K9, rope rescuers, firefighters from the Budapest Rescue Union member organizations.  EVOLSAR teams were invited to participate through the Hungarian EVOLSAR member team – OPVE – which organized and ran the exercise in cooperation with Budapest Capital Directorate for Civil Protection.

This 2-day exercise simulated major urban search operations at two separate locations, each with numerous work sites.  Rescue teams operated from and returned to Budapest Rescue Union base. Besides prepared technical scenes of different levels of difficulty, requiring varied search and rescue skills (e.g. live fire, bridge collapse with 10 vehicles with passengers inside, confined space, rubble, etc…), specially trained Red Cross members simulated live victims during the exercise. Altogether, more than 40 live victims were found, received first aid and were transported to ambulances, as part of this simulation. 

On behalf of EVOLSAR, Edelweiss (IT), EFRU (MT) and Bombeiros Voluntários de Peniche (PT) teams have sent trained rescuers to the exercise, while RSHC of Serbia (which is not part of EVOLSAR but networks often with EVOLSAR teams) has sent a team of observers. EVOLSAR teams were directed to work both as part of the already assembled Hungarian rescue teams and later, as a separate task force with Hungarian rescuers providing LEMA assistance.

Hungarian official Civil Protection authorities have declared the exercise a successful one with no injuries.  OPVE and EVOLSAR have gained valuable experience which will allow EVOLSAR to improve its rapid reaction capability in the future in support of European emergencies in particular.

Denis Lev
International Coordinator for OPVE (Hungary)

Editor’s comment:
OPVE is the lead team for Hungary within EVOLSAR.

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Rescue 2016 – Edelweiss

May 15, 2016 in Exercise Simulation by Administrator

The 22nd of April 2016 marked another important achievement in the EVOLSAR calendar during a training weekend organized by the Italian member team ‘Edelweiss’.

The event saw rescuers from all of the six (6) member teams of EVOLSAR, as well as another six (6) countries, represented by volunteer rescue teams that aspire to join or work with the organization in the near future. A twelve (12) hour, full scale rescue simulation gave the volunteer rescuers another opportunity to work together and experience interoperability in the different scenarios as prepared by the Italians. Such scenarios included confined space rescues, rescue from heights, mass casualty rescues and, for the first time, a rescue operation from the fourth floor of an operational hospital in Soverato which had to be conducted in the shortest and most discrete way possible. Other than the simulations, a number of workshops were organized for the participant rescuers while presentations were held by Petzl, the Hungarian Team ‘Central Buda – Volunteer Civil Protection Association’ which officially accessed EVOLSAR as a member team during the same weekend. New teams from Spain & Portugal presented an overview of their organisation to EVOLSAR. An interesting highlight was an experience shared by ‘Serve On’, the British team member, who shared a bitter sweet experience during one of their deployments in Pakistan.
In the words of Mr. Pasquale Pipicelli, president of Edelweiss, this training weekend was worth every every second of preparation as it was a total success in every way. Mr. Pipicelli thanked everyone present during the closing ceremony, the government officials who visited the event, Edelweiss’ sponsors and most of all each and every active member of Edelweiss, who gave up so much of their time during the past months for the successful outcome of this exercise.

This three day event included meetings as part of the Erasmus+ KA2 project entitled ‘Synergising European Volunteers Rescue Teams – A Rescue Operations Manual’ led by the Maltese rescue team the Emergency Fire & Rescue Unit (EFRU).

SAR Day

November 15, 2015 in Exercise Simulation by Administrator

SAR DayThis is the disaster area that has been set up by our own Portuguese Team Escola Portuguesa de Salvamento. The joint training exercise entitled ‘SAR DAY’ will see all themembers of EVOLSAR work together once again in 2015 with the aim of standardising the rescue techniques adapted by the organisation. This training is being organised in conjunction with the First Transnational Meeting of an ERMASMUS + cross-European project entitled ‘Synergising European Volunteer Rescue Teams – A Rescue Operations Manual’. This project will see the following teams participating as partner organisations: Escola Portuguesa de Salvamento (EPS Team Portugal), Edelweiss (Italy), Elite Special Task Force of Greece (EP.OM.E.A.), the Cyprus Civil Protection Volunteer Team and Serve On (UK).  Good Luck to all the volunteers who have left their families to prepare themselves to save lives when disaster strikes.

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