Following the disaster in Albania, the European Civil Protection Mechanism was activated today. During this morning, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Ion Marcel VELA, notified the Prime Minister of Romania, Ludovic ORBAN, and discussed with the President Klaus IOHANNIS about the situation created at European level.
Mr President Klaus IOHANNIS required Romania’s urgent involvement to provide support and assistance to the Albanian authorities, following the dramatic situation generated by the series of earthquakes that hit this country.
This afternoon, in agreement with the Prime Minister, the RO-USAR rescue-search team of the special unit of the General Inspectorate for Emergency Situations within the Ministry of Internal Affairs, led by Colonel Vasile PIRTEA, took off to Tirana by two aircrafts model C 130 Hercules, made available by the Ministry of National Defense, including for the transportation of the 12 tons of equipment issues needed for the intervention.
The team contents 52 firefighters – rescuers, authorized by the United Nations for such missions, four dogs trained to save human lives and two volunteers specialized in canine training.
The Minister of Internal Affairs, Marcel VELA, and the Ambassador of Albania in Bucharest, His Excellency Ilir TEPELENA, were at the 90 Otopeni Air Base in order to greet, at the departure to Tirana, the team that will represent Romania in the rescue actions in Albania.
The humanitarian assistance provided by Romania represents the emergency assistance provided to the states in case of disasters, in order to mitigate the consequences upon the victims. Rescue teams and equipment issues are always ready for action, to provide rapid response from the EU around the world.
The Romanian search-rescue team is INSARAG certified at medium level (RO – USAR), and the team members are able to handle the consequences of a major earthquake. In order to rescue the people trapped under the ruins, the rescuers are prepared to intervene with specific equipment for creating gaps in the concrete or brick construction elements horizontally or vertically placesd, supporting the constructive elements that threaten to collapse, respectively, lifting and moving the construction elements that imprison the victims.
The certification of such a team derives from the need to harmonize national disaster response capabilities with international standards (UN and EU), Romania is, equally, a state that has benefited from international support, but has also provided assistance to the other countries affected by disasters.