International rescue dogs exercise has been successfully completed
Again this year, Ljubljana held the traditional, already 23rd International Rescue Dog Exercise Ljubljana 2023, in which 250 participants from five countries took part.
In the exercise, organized in cooperation with the Slovenian Rescue Dog Handler Association (DVRPS), 22 teams from Austria, Croatia, Italy, Germany and Slovenia participated.
The exercise is always designed to imitate real-life circumstances as closely as possible. The basis of the exercise is the danger of an earthquake in the central part of Slovenia and the assumption that we need international rescue assistance after the earthquake. The emphasis in carrying out the activities of the teams of rescue dog handlers was on finding missing persons in the rubble and nature. Teams of rescue dog handlers had to be available for rescue throughout the exercise without being informed of the schedule, type of work or number of missing persons in advance. During the exercise, we checked the reception, accommodation and use of foreign rescue assistance, the abilities of handlers and their rescue dogs in the rubble and in searching for missing persons in nature, as well as individual elements of the rescue organization and management of protection, rescue and assistance in accordance with the City of Ljubljana plans for protection and rescue.
Teams of rescue dog handlers searched for missing persons in the rubble of the companies Tisa and VOKA Snaga, in Podpeča and Sveta Ana, the Railway Museum in Ljubljana and in the broader area of the Slovenian Rescue Dog Handler Association training grounds in Kranj. At one of these locations, administration of first aid to a found person was tested, and the rope technique utilization and transport along the Ljubljanica River were carried out at the Trnovo Wharf-Gruden Embankment work site. The orientation hike was conducted through the centre of Ljubljana and in the Podpeč area. Following international practice, a reception centre for rescue teams (Reception and Departure Centre RDC) and a base camp (Base of Operations BoO) were set up, from where teams of rescue dog handlers set off on rescue operations.
The novelties in this year's exercise were a test of digital data transmission using amateur radio lines and a test of using T-cards for management. The digital capture, analysis and display of data on rescue operations, their results and search teams have already become a regular feature.