Tokyo: Tokyo police will set up a special team to be engaged in rescue operations in case of an inland earthquake hitting the metropolitan area or to be dispatched as an international emergency aid unit, police officials said on Wednesday.
The Special Rescue Team (SRT) will consist of 35 elite members who have been involved in rescue operations in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster in northeastern Japan or who specialize in using heavy machines.
It will be formally launched on September 1, Japan`s National Disaster Prevention Day, as the first such unit among the nation`s prefectural police.
On disaster sites, the members will assess the conditions of those injured through electrocardiographic equipment, while sending live images to the police headquarters by small cameras installed on their helmets.
In peacetime, the SRT members will polish their skills while providing training to other police officers so the metropolitan police forces as a whole can improve their capacity to deal with disasters.
"It will be impossible to tackle disasters only with the 35 members," Koji Yagawa, a senior official at the metropolitan police involved in forming the SRT, said.
"It is their most important duty to provide other officers and local residents with knowledge on disaster responses. (KYODO)