Dogs help first responders in Tenn
| 11.15.2006 | 03:12:59 | Views: 3307 | ID:
November 15 '06: Responders in Tennessee are using dogs to help rescue and recovery efforts, Firehouse.com reported Tuesday. The Tennessee Task Force One is only just one of 28 emergency response groups trained in the US using dogs to help locate victims of terrorist attacks or natural disasters.
The TTFO is "made up of firefighters, police officers and civilian volunteers, who respond to both small - and large-scale emergencies," Firehouse reported. In Tenneesse, the task force "functions under the Memphis/Shelby County Emergency Management Agency.Operations are coordinated through the Memphis Fire Department with assistance from other local fire departments." The dogs are selected when they are about 18 months old. They can be any breed and once they reach a certain age they are retired and adopted, usually by their handlers. The handlers "are taught how to handle and how to read the dog. Then they learn to control the dog from a distance using arm motion commands." "Before they can deploy," Firehouse reported, "the handlers must go through HAZMAT training, ropes training and rappelling courses among others." Dogs were used to help locate survivors after the World Trade Center Towers collapsed, as well as the location of victims' remains. After Hurricane Katrina, dogs were used to help find flood victims, or the elderly who were lost.
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