RCAF urban search and rescue team trains in Massachusetts

Cpl Sam Yoon, 19 Wing Comox and Cpl Dinis Neves,8 Wing Trenton hang over a wall creating an entry breach.

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Personnel from the RCAF Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) team recently completed specialist training in Massachusetts as a requirement to be deployable members of their team.

The intensive training took place with the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Massachusetts Task Force 1. Members of the RCAF team learned how to effectively detect victims in collapsed buildings and rubble piles, shore up and stabilize damaged buildings, move heavy objects and rubble, and break into and breach collapse zones to rescue victims.

This top-notch training took place in Beverly, Mass., and was provided by senior members of Massachusetts Task Force 1 and USAR experts from across the United States. Nine members of USAR Comox and five members of USAR Trenton were joined by U.S. Army personnel, fire fighters, and other first responders from New England to become technical search specialists and structural collapse technicians.

RCAF USAR maintains a strong working relationship with Massachusetts Task Force 1, having completed training together on numerous occasions and deploying as a task force this past summer as part of Exercise VIGILANT GUARD in Vermont.

The RCAF USAR team comprises fire fighters from 8 Wing Trenton and 19 Wing Comox who maintain a 24-hour notice to move to respond and deploy to natural or manmade disasters, both domestic and international, in conjunction with the CAF Disaster Assistance Response Team.

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