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National Earthquake Rescue Training Base set up
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The National Earthquake Rescue Training Base has been set up in Beijing, and will soon be put into use, Wu Jianchun, director of China's Earthquake Response and Rescue Center said on June 2.

Wu said that the training base would mainly provide training sessions for three groups of people: the National Earthquake Rescue Team and the provincial rescue teams; emergency administrative staff at all levels; and social volunteers, particularly core volunteers.

He stated that, based on the experience and lessons learned from the Wenchuan earthquake rescue procedures, this training base would take advantage of all the existing resources to ensure a more rapid, more efficient earthquake rescue response.

As a search-and-rescue expert, Wu also put forward four significant proposals regarding China's quake rescue efforts:

First, adhere to scientific rescue. Make full use of professional staff, skill and equipment, guarantee the safety of rescuers, and avoid secondary injuries to the trapped.

Second, strengthen rescue team building. Improve the skills of the staff, but also enlarge the scale of the rescue team. In some seismic areas, the professional rescue team should coordinate with local fire brigades and other rescue teams to form a more comprehensive rescue network, he said.

Third, reinforce the volunteer team construction, and augment the training sessions for core volunteers. If both professional and voluntary rescue team construction is enhanced, quake rescue work will achieve optimal effects.

Fourth, provide necessary supplements needed for communication and transportation of large equipment. Chinese rescue teams also need to be equipped with water treatment abilities to enhance rescue work in disaster areas.

Actually, after the May 12 earthquake hit, the National Earthquake Rescue Team immediately went into action. The first team arrived in Chengdu at 22:40 PM. They successively implemented rescue work in Dujiangyan, Hanwang town in Mianzhu, Yingxiu town in Wenchuan, and Beichuan – altogether 48 places within 15 days, or 216 hours. They successfully rescued 49 survivors (6 experts, 30 students, 13 residents), cleared up 1,080 remains, coordinated with other teams to rescue 12 other survivors, and also helped locate 36 trapped residents.

(China.org.cn by Fan Junmei, June 3, 2008)

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