FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 23, 2010
MAYOR BLOOMBERG TO RECOGNIZE WORK OF JOINT NYPD/FDNY URBAN SEARCH & RESCUE TEAM THAT SAVED LIVES IN HAITI
Urban Search & Rescue Team Returning to New York from Port Au Prince, Haiti
City Hall Ceremony to be Held on Monday at 4:00 PM
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today announced that New York Task Force One, the City's Federal Emergency Management Agency-sponsored (FEMA) Urban Search and Rescue team made up of specially-trained personnel from the New York City Police and Fire Departments, is returning to New York from Haiti. The Mayor also announced that he will hold a City Hall ceremony on Monday and award each team member a certificate of recognition to thank them for their service.
"I am incredibly proud of our Urban Search and Rescue Team and their selfless response to the earthquake in Haiti," said Mayor Bloomberg. "Our highly-trained police officers and firefighters lent their skills to the rescue mission, and their life-saving work helped bring some joy and relief to several families at a time of terrible tragedy and devastation. We are grateful for the safe return of the joint NYPD/FDNY team and look forward to showing them our thanks at City Hall."
The team members conducted several rescues, including their first rescue within hours of arriving in Haiti. The team is trained in the use of specialized equipment including listening devices that can detect a heart beat, motion detection devices that can detect the smallest movements, and thermal imaging cameras and search cameras for a confined space environment. Eighty members of New York Task Force One and approximately 20 tons of equipment spent one week in Haiti. New York Task Force One is managed by the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and is trained to respond to catastrophic events involving the collapse of heavy steel and concrete.
In the wake of the tragic earthquake in Haiti, New Yorkers from every community have stepped up to offer support. The City's Haiti Relief Fund alone has brought in nearly $900,000 in donations to support earthquake relief efforts.
Stu Loeser / Jason Post (212) 788-2958
Chris Gilbride (Emergency Management)