The scenario: two terrorists have just opened fire in a performing arts theatre. Regrettably there are numerous people injured. The special units from the federal and local police swiftly intervene on-site, and isolate the perpetrators in the building’s basement. With police assistance, the emergency services are already in a position to intervene and evacuate those injured. This joint exercise led on Tuesday, between the police and fire services of the Brussels Emergency Assistance Zone, in the presence of the Minister of the Interior, Jan Jambon, marks the launch of Belgium’s first “Casualty Extraction Team” (CET).
Some 28 firemen are currently now trained by the National Police Academy to make up Belgium’s first “Casualty Extraction Team” (CET). This is a concept which has been inspired by United Kingdom. The objective is to enable this specialist emergency team to intervene at the scene of a shooting before the perpetrator is neutralised. Jan Jambon indicated, “This is a lesson that we learned from the November 13th, 2015 attack at the Bataclan in Paris.” He went on,“The emergency services could not, on that occasion, help the victims before the police killed the terrorists. With this team in place, we will be able to help victims of such attacks much quicker.”
The Brussels Emergency Assistance Zone and Brussels-Ixelles Police Zone have taken part in the pilot project. Mr Jambon said he has every confidence that the emergency assistance zones of Belgium’s other main cities (Antwerp, Charleroi, Liège and Ghent) will also have each eventually have an identical team. The Brussels Secretary of State for Fire-fighting and Urgent Medical Assistance, Cécile Jodogne, also supports the initiative.
The Brussels Times