2 Apr 2019

Search and rescue training facility opens in Samoa

8:19 am on 2 April 2019

Samoa has opened a regional search and rescue training facility for the Pacific.

The Facility will provide a base for Samoa's emergency responders as well as a training facility for responders from around the region.

The project is a partnership between the Samoa Disaster Management Office, the Samoa Fire and Emergency Service Authority and the Pacific Community.

It is being funded with $US409,800 dollars from the European Union and the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States.

It's intended that the facility will help to ensure regional emergency services are prepared, trained and equipped to respond quickly when disaster strikes.

Samoa's prime minister Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi said it was a "significant milestone" in improving search and rescue operations.

The facility will provide training for up to 40 participants in a range of emergency areas.

It comprises a training room, equipment rooms, and men's and women's changing rooms.

Speaking at the facility's opening, the EU Delegation's Pacific project manager, Jenny Brown, said increasing climate change driven emergencies mean better training is needed.

"Preparedness is critical so that all response efforts are well planned," Ms Brown said.