S’wak Fire and Rescue Dept: More mountain and cave SAR teams to be set up

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KUCHING: The Fire and Rescue Department plans to set up more mountain and cave search-and-rescue teams to respond to emergencies in these areas.

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The department’s director-general Datuk Hamdan Wahid said so far, there was only one mountain search-and-rescue (Mosar) team at Mount Kinabalu in Sabah.

“We have appointed 40 mountain guides as auxiliary officers for the Mosar in Sabah, because they are familiar with Mount Kinabalu. They receive allowances and personal protective equipment.

“After this, we plan to set up Mosar teams in Peninsular Malaysia in areas where there are hiking and recreational activities, such as Kuala Tahan (in Pahang).

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Hamdan also said the department planned to form a cave search-and-rescue team at Mulu National Park in Sarawak.

“We believe that with proper training and skills, such a team will be able to operate more efficiently.

“We cannot treat it as general rescue because special expertise is needed to carry out cave rescues,” he said.

He added that there were currently two cave rescue teams in the peninsula, based in Perak and Pahang respectively, while the Mulu team would be formed soon. – The Star

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