The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) held a training course on techniques for search and rescue operations to further strengthen the skills of Cambodia’s emergency responders and improve their efficiency.

Chan Lumphat, NCDM vice-chairman and head of the coordinating team for disaster management, presided over the opening of the training session held at the special military zone command 706 on December 6.

He encouraged the attendees to train regularly to respond to natural disasters because they can occur at any time and they must always be ready to rescue those in distress.

NCDM spokesman Khun Sokha told The Post that 120 trainees had attended the course.

“This training will ready our forces for eventual disasters such as floods and building collapses. Should such incidents happen, all members of the force have the duty to intervene immediately,” he said.

He said that at the training seminar experts gave seminars on skills such as motor-boat driving, rescue methods, avoiding accidents and the serious dangers they may face during disasters. The training was focused on upgrading search-and-rescue operations in disasters such as floods, landslides, windstorms and even infectious disease outbreaks.

According to Sokha, since the beginning of 2020 a total of 720 trainees have received this training.

“We have held the training courses for six units with 120 members in each unit. According to our plans, we will train all 16 units eventually, so there are 10 units left that we need to train,” he said

Prime Minister Hun Sen established two rescue teams – including the coordinating team for disaster management and the disaster search-and-rescue operations intervention team – in 2019.

“[Hun Sen] intended these teams to be well-equipped for the urgent and necessary task of rescuing people quickly during emergency incidents. We have the means, equipment and materials already but when they undergo this training they will have the knowledge and skills to be able to rescue victims in time with effectiveness,” Sokha said.