Urban Search and Rescue


The Disaster Response Department (DRD) of the Hellenic  Rescue Team (HRT) is active since 1994 in research and rescue operations in urban environment, and took its present form in 2003.

The purpose of DRD is the immediate and coordinated response and mobilisation during heavy and extensive disasters in order to conduct search and rescue operations, as well as the continuous training of its members.


The long experience of DRD, the advanced technological equipment and the excellent (and constantly updated) technical training of its members allows it to operate successfully, whenever called upon, in the following fields:

1) Natural disasters response
a) seismic disasters response
b) water pumping
c) forest firefighting

2) Information to schools and other institutions about the updated seismic protection measures and the conduct of preparedness exercises.

Especially about the training of the DRD’s members it is worth noting that this includes, in addition to the continuous training on the basic skills of a rescuer (providing first aid, climbing techniques, orientation, etc.), specialised forms of education such as:

• victim locating in ruins techniques,
• ruins penetration and victims evacuation,
• evacuation of trapped victims in traffic accidents,
• floods tackling,
• firefighting,
• as well as the handling of special technological equipment needed for each of the above cases.


Future priorities / objectives of the Department, in addition to strengthening the operational capacity and alertness of its members (through continuous training and exercises) are:
• The development of new contacts, partnerships and co-training with other organisations, groups, special schools abroad and international organisations,
• Regular updating of the technological equipment, so that the Department is at all times able to worthily represent our country in international missions.

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