Some good news from New Orleans today:
Senator Walter Boasso said a Vancouver-based team reached St. Bernard parish five days before the U.S. army got there.
“Fabulous, fabulous guys,” Boasso said. “They started rolling with us and got in boats to save people … We’ve got Canadian flags flying everywhere.”
Good to hear, glad to help. Anytime.
Here’s the release from the City of Vancouver PR department:
The Vancouver Urban Search and Rescue Team completed a successful five-day effort in areas around New Orleans, Louisiana which were devastated by Hurricane Katrina.
The 46-member team, made up of staff from the City of Vancouver’s Fire, Police and Engineering departments, and from the B.C. Ambulance Service, deployed on
August 31 to Louisiana in the wake of the disaster. They returned to Vancouver on September 6.
Their work resulted in the rescue of 119 people.
All members are trained in structural collapse and confined space rescue techniques. As well, the team is completely self sustainable, without re-supply, for up to 10 days.
The USAR team was formed in 1995 as a part of the City’s emergency preparedness planning initiatives, and is the only heavy urban rescue team in Canada.
In 2001, it became officially certified by the United Nations for deployment internationally and is currently being used as a model by the federal government for the development of other teams across Canada.
Great job guys, you’ve made us all very proud!