We are happy to confirm that all members of UK International Search and Rescue (UK ISAR), who were recently deployed to Morocco in response to the devastating earthquake, have now all returned safely to the UK.
Seven members of West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS) were among some 60 fire and rescue service personnel deployed after the offer of help from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office was accepted by Morocco on Sunday 10 September.
The team landed at Gatwick Airport at around 3pm on Tuesday (19 September). They were welcomed back by WMFS’s Chief Fire Officer Wayne Brown at Bickenhill Fire Station.
During the deployment, they conducted several missions. These included searches in remote areas across the Atlas Mountains, reporting back humanitarian needs assessments and conducting aerial searches. Volunteers also administered first aid to those in need.
The UK ISAR Incident Room was established at WMFS HQ and was staffed 24/7 by non-deployed UK ISAR team members.
Wayne Brown, WMFS’s Chief Fire Officer, said: “We are proud to have once again answered the call for help after the devastating earthquake in Morocco.
“Firefighters and staff from WMFS were part of the 60-strong team that was deployed, undertaking a number of tasks to support Moroccan agencies.
“Once again, we were taken aback by the kindness shown to our volunteers, who acted professionally and diligently in what was our third deployment this year, after we supported missions in Turkey and Malawi.
“Our thanks also go to those running the Incident Room at our Headquarters, who provided vital logistical and support work.
“As is the case after all UK ISAR deployments, the welfare of all involved in the operation is paramount, and everyone will receive the necessary mental and physical support in the aftermath of the deployment.”