Urban search and rescue operations (USAR) in collapsed buildings after the 2023 earthquake in Türkiye

Manuel Pardo Ríos1-4, Cindia Morales Sánchez3,5, Yassel Parra Beneitez1,3, Pablo López Guardiola2, Alberto Lanchares Ortiz2, Andrés Pedreño Rosique2, César Roza Alonso6, Rafael Castro Delgado4,6,7

Affiliation of the authors

1Management of Urgencies and Emergencias Sanitarias 061 de Region of Murcia, Spain. 2UCAM Catholic University of Murcia, Research Group of New Technologies in Health (NT4H), Murcia, Spain. 3ONGD United Firefighters Without Borders (BUSF), Spain. 4RINVEMER- SEMES (Prehospital Emergency). 5SUAP of Almonte, Andalusian Health Service, Huelva, Spain. 6Servicio de Salud del Principado de Asturias (SAMU-Asturias), Institute of Health Research of the Principality of Asturias (Grupo Research Group in Prehospital and Disaster Assistance Research Group), Spain. 7Department of Medicine, University of Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain.



Pardo Ríos M, Morales Sánchez C, Parra Beneitez Y, López Guardiola P, Lanchares Ortiz A, Pedreño Rosique A, et al. Urban search and rescue operations (USAR) in collapsed buildings after the 2023 earthquake in Türkiye. Emergencias. 2023;35:288-96


The earthquakes that occurred in February 2023 in Türkiye had some of the worst consequences of recent years. The Turkish authorities first deployed local resources and then appealed for international help. The International Search and Rescue Group of the United Nations aims to establish minimum international standards for search and rescue teams and a methodology for coordinating responses to earthquakes, tsunamis, and other natural disasters. A main concern of the group is to coordinate operations on the ground. This article offers perspectives on the epidemiology of earthquakes, the management of emergency response teams and Türkiye’s disaster management agency (AFAD); it also explains how rescues are carried out in collapsed buildings. The experience of Firefighters Without Borders after the recent earthquakes and a rescue that took 14 hours are also described.


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