Serve On volunteers were delighted to welcome some of our colleagues from the new UK International Voluntary Rescue Alliance (UKIVRA) to watch April’s training session for our International Response Team recruits.
Friends from SARAID and SPEAR were at our Chilmark training base to discuss plans for our future collaboration, including joint training, shared good practice and developing standards for NGOs in the field of urban search and rescue.
Meanwhile, our IRT recruits were getting back to some USAR practice of their own after two months of swift water rescue training.
Friday night started with some classroom instruction on rope access, to build on the safe working at heights training the recruits had already done.
With the theory, done, the team was pitched into a rescue scenario late into the night.
They loaded the equipment they would need to be self-sufficient and to carry our a range of rescue tasks and were then ‘deployed’ to the training area in the early hours of Saturday.
There they worked quickly to set up a Base of Operations (BoO) and to unload their equipment so they were prepared to commence rescue operations at first light.
The day started with some rope rescue demonstrations before the recruits put the lessons into practice for themselves and also ran through some exercises in mechanical advantage.
As the rescue scenario got under way the team had to use their assessment skills and propping and shoring knowledge to gain access into a collapsed building.
They then had to use technical search and breaking and breaching tools to make their way through concrete and brick obstacles to locate a casualty trapped in the rubble.
When, as darkness fell, it was clear the casualty could only be evacuated from above, the team went into action with their newly-learned rope access skills.
Special thanks to instructors Ian, Tony and Brett for another really beneficial weekend’s training, and to our UKIVRA colleagues for taking the time to advance plans for joint working.