Poland responds to Nepal quake with emergency aid
PR dla Zagranicy
Polish firefighters and medics are to fly to Nepal as part of an international aid effort following a devastating earthquake which has left upwards of 2,000 fatalities.
People inspect the damage of the collapsed landmark Dharahara, also called Bhimsen Tower, after an earthquake caused serious damage in Kathmandu, Nepal, 25.04.2015. Photo: PAP/EPA/NARENDRA SHRESTHA
Interior Minister Teresa Piotrowska took the decision to send the HUSAR Polish heavy search and rescue team, made up of 81 firefighters from Warsaw, Gdańsk, Nowy Sącz, Łódź and Poznań.
The HUSAR group is to take specialist equipment to Nepal to aid in the rescue efforts, including endoscope cameras, geophones as well as hydraulic and pneumatic heavy gear. It is reported that 12 search and rescue dogs will also be travelling with the team.
A group of emergency medics is also being sent by the Polish Centre for International Aid. The six-man rapid response medical team is being sent to Nepal for an initial ten-day mission.
“It’s a small group as there are availability problems at the airport in Kathmandu,” head of the Polish Centre for International Aid, Wojciech Wilk has informed, adding, however, that “if there will be a greater need for medical help from Poland […] then we can mobilise more doctors, medical aid and rescuers”.
No Poles reported dead or missing
Saturday’s quake is the worst to hit Nepal since 1934, reaching 7.8 on the Richter scale.
While on Sunday morning the death toll was still rising, it is known that at least 700 people have died in the capital Kathmandu alone.
At least 5,000 people have suffered injuries after the quake ripped through the Himalayas, also triggering avalanches on Mount Everest.
On Saturday evening, Poland’s Foreign Ministry informed on Twitter that so far no reports have surfaced that any Poles died in the earthquake, although the Polish honorary consul in Nepal has asked tourist police in Kathmandu to report on the number of Polish citizens currently in the country. (jb)