Urban search and rescue team in Phoenix ready if needed - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Urban search and rescue team in Phoenix ready if needed

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PHOENIX -

Police, EMT's, firefighters; all the first responders in Oklahoma didn't hesitate when it was time to go in and start searching and pulling out survivors. They're trained for it.

Firefighters at Station 8 in downtown Phoenix are part of Arizona Task Force One, an urban search and rescue team, one of 28 in the nation.

We spoke to Captain Darrell Wiseman earlier today about what this type of job requires. He's standing by to assist in Oklahoma if needed.

"Us as rescuers have to go in very strategically, we go in with our energy in a centralized location so we can assess the damage, make it safe for us to go in there," says Capt. Wiseman.

Arizona Task Force One is comprised of 80 people including engineers and firefighters.

They were last called out to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina, and helped 150 people their first day.

"It was pretty devastating when you start thinking about not only just the water damage but also the structural damage that was there, trying to find people, a lot of people were still trapped by the time we got there."

Captain Wiseman says that crews like his work in 72-hour shifts, day and night.

The goal is to stay safe so they can work and rescue as many survivors as possible -- like the residents who lived through today's storms.

Arizona Task Force One is required to hit the road within four hours of getting the call for help. That means all 80 members will be ready to go.


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