Local people run search and rescue team in Turkey’s Kayseri
A search and rescue team in the Central Anatolian province of Kayseri, which has been operating for 25 years and working on a voluntary basis, are determined to save the lives of people, sometimes putting their own lives at risk, across Turkey.
Turkuaz Search and Rescue, which consists of a group of volunteers from different professions, works to save the lives of not only those in city centers, but also in mountains, underwater and rivers.
Stating that his team is at a very good point in urban search, rescue and post-earthquake debris removal, team leader Mehmet Eskitaş emphasized that the responsiveness of the team is at the desired level.
The teams, which started the first search and rescue activities after the Marmara Earthquake in 1999, also participated in the search works of university student Gülistan Doku, who disappeared in the eastern province of Tunceli early this year.
Deniz Temel, the operation officer of the team, stated that they received continuous training in swimming pools during the winter and in Kızılırmak, Turkey’s longest river, when the weather is warmer.
Emphasizing that drowning cases are seen in Kayseri province, which does not have a coast, Temel said that the team is ready to respond to these cases.
“There are many cases of drowning in Kızılırmak and Zamantı rivers and the dams above them. We have 15-20 cases annually. We do the first response to these drownings,” Temel noted.