News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

May 30, 2019


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Regular Training Ensures Readiness to Respond: Pedersen

Over 50 members of CAN TF-4, Manitoba’s Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) team, leave Winnipeg tomorrow to join other Canadian and United States teams at a special training facility near Butlerville, Ind., Growth, Enterprise and Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen, minister responsible for the Office of the Fire Commissioner (OFC), announced today.

“Manitoba’s USAR team is an elite, all-hazards response team that will get hands-on experience by participating in this international exercise and can test their training in real-life situations that could save a life someday,” Pedersen said.  “Under the leadership of the OFC, this team has the resources to assist with a wide variety of rescue situations and is constantly preparing to help here at home or abroad.  We wish the entire team safe travels and a successful training mission.”  

Manitoba’s CAN TF-4 team will be joined by teams from Vancouver (CAN TF-1), Calgary (CAN TF-2), Toronto (CAN TF-3), Montreal (CAN TF-6) and observers from a newer team in Halifax (CAN TF-5).  Manitoba’s team includes representation from the Saskatchewan Office of the Fire Commissioner and will be the first Canadian team on the ground at the Muscatatuck Urban Training Centre in Butlerville, joining other teams representing areas such as Colorado, California, the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and Australia.

The exercise allows teams to select their own goals and targets to practice.  A variety of scenarios will be played out including the structural collapse of a parking garage with actors playing the role of trapped or injured victims.  In addition, there is an opportunity to rescue people trapped by flooding, or an underground collapse in a tunnel or subway.  From May 31 to June 9, teams will rotate in and out of the exercise area, sometimes working alongside each other to simulate a mass response to a large-scale emergency situation such as an earthquake.  

The OFC co-ordinates the 100-plus member CAN TF-4 team in Manitoba, which includes emergency response professionals from municipal, provincial and federal services and a canine team.  CAN TF-4 can be mobilized within hours and has the capacity to be self-sustaining for up to two weeks in any weather anywhere in the country.

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