International collaboration sees improved capacity for post-crash response in Tajikistan
Following the mountain and road rescue training delivered in Tajikistan in March with FIRE AID members the Staffordshire Emergency Services Humanitarian Aid Association (SESHAA) and Women in the Fire Service, a team of 5 SESHAA members, supported by the UK Embassy in Dushanbe and EASST, left the UK on 22nd June in a convoy to handover two fire appliances donated by the London Fire Brigade to fire fighters from the Republican Fire Service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Tajikistan.
The appliances were filled with modern equipment donated by FIRE AID member the Scottish Emergency Rescue Organisation and included two road traffic collision sets which will help extract road crash casualties quickly and safely, improving their chance of survival.
On donating the appliances Deputy Commissioner and Director of Operations at London Fire Brigade, Tom George, said:
“I am really pleased to donate two fire engines to Tajikistan. With some of the world’s deadliest roads, it was heartbreaking to learn that 20% of road fatalities there are children.”
The UK team took the appliances as far as Minsk, Belarus where they were handed over to fire fighters from the Republican Fire Service of Tajikistan in a ceremony hosted by the Ministry for Emergency Services in Belarus, the UK Embassy in Minsk and, EASST partners, the Belarusian Auto Moto Touring Club (BKA) at the University for Civil Protection. At the handover event Irina Potyakina of the BKA said:
“We were pleased to provide all the necessary assistance to both teams. As BKA is involved in road safety we know, first-hand how important it is to provide modern equipment and appropriate training to effectively respond to different kinds of incidents. Together we carry out the same important work: saving human lives.”
SESHAA’s convoy leader, Gary Dumighan stated that:
“This project is a great example of 3 countries – the UK, Belarus and Tajikistan – collaboratively working together for one common goal. I would like to thank our partners in Belarus for their hospitality; it was truly humbling.”
This was echoed by HMA Fiona Gibbs who said:
“rescuers are always ready to assist each other and strengthen their cooperation.”
The appliances are now well on their way to Tajikistan escorted by EASST partners the Young Generation of Tajikistan where they will be used to enhance the fire service’s capacity and capability to respond to road traffic collisions and other emergencies.