Nepalese Guards at RAF Halton Respond to Earthquake Emergency

  |  Published: May 12th 2015
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Nine Nepalese Military Police Guard Service (MPGS) soldiers working at RAF Halton have families affected by the recent earthquake in Nepal. Luckily their families are all safe but some of their homes have been damaged.

Lance Corporal Bijay Gurung and Private Ram Lama, who have family homes damaged in Katmandu, have collected clothing donated by RAF Halton families and delivered them to the Gurkha Welfare Centre at Aldershot Garrison.

On Tuesday 5 May, they were fundraising at the Swan Road and Bonham Carter gates for RAF Halton personnel to support to the Nepal Earthquake Appealand so far the total stands at over £500.

An RAF C-17 aircraft has already carried a team of Gurkha engineers as well as crucial aid supplies including shelter kits and solar lanterns. The aircraft also carried 18 tonnes of supplies including more than 1,100 shelter kits, including plastic sheeting, rope and rope tensioners to keep families sheltered from increasingly wet weather in Nepal; more than 1,800 solar lanterns to provide lighting and a means of charging phones, radios and torches; 18 Gurkha engineers consisting of 12 from 2nd Battalion Royal Gurkha Rifles (based at Folkestone) and six from the Queen’s Gurkha Engineers (based at Maidstone) who will assess engineering needs and operate water purification equipment following damage to water supplies in the country; and a Land Rover for teams helping with relief efforts.

The UK has pledged £15 million towards relief efforts in Nepal so far and team of more than 60 UK International Search and Rescue responders and specialist rescue dogs have arrived in Nepal and are assisting with rescue efforts.

Dispatched by the Department for International Development, members of the team are already operating on the ground and travelling out of the capital to more remote areas. The team includes four trained search dogs and their handlers, seven rescue crews, medical support, command and control experts and support teams.

The specialist search and rescue personnel are drawn from 15 Fire and Rescue Services from across the UK. Their capabilities include locating deeply buried victims, constructing timber supports to safely shore up buildings and providing advanced life support.

They were joined by an 8-strong group of expert trauma medics to deal with injuries in the aftermath of Saturday’s earthquake. Funded by DFID and managed by Save the Children, the UK Emergency Medical Team includes a paramedic, an emergency physician, an anaesthetist, a rehabilitation advisor, a logistics manager, a medical logistics manager, a team leader and deputy team leader. More UK medics are expected to arrive in country to bolster the team in the coming days.

The UK ISAR team provides specialised, technical search and rescue in collapsed structures, confined spaces, in largely populated areas. It responds overseas at the request of the affected nations Government to sudden onset disasters on behalf of the Department for International Development.

It is one of 27 United Nations classified Search & Rescue teams from across the world and responds to the following incident types: Earthquakes, Hurricanes, Tornadoes, and Tsunami. Previous UKISAR deployments include Iraq, Turkey, Algeria, Pakistan, India, Iran, Mozambique, Indonesia, Haiti, New Zealand, Japan and Bosnia.

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