Eight firefighters from the Community of Madrid, from the Special Emergency and Immediate Response Unit (ERICAM), will travel to Mozambique to help those affected by tropical cyclone Idai, which devastated the center of the African country and caused 468 deaths.
Four of the eight troops will travel to Mozambique on Friday, March 29 and will stay there for fifteen days, while the second shift is scheduled to depart on April 11, according to sources from the regional government's presidency.
All of them are operational firefighters, trained in logistics and international coordination, with accredited experience in humanitarian emergencies, for having participated in exercises and real catastrophes together with ERICAM.
Several of them have also collaborated voluntarily with other humanitarian aid agencies in emergencies and catastrophes.
The fire department of the Community of Madrid collaborates as part of the logistics group in the EMT2, a field hospital with surgical capacity, within the Spanish Emergency Aid and Rescue Technical Team (START, in its acronym in English).
In the wake of the alert in southeastern Africa, the START project, mainly sanitary, was activated last Friday, designed to be deployed in less than 72 hours in humanitarian emergencies in which Spanish cooperation decides to intervene.
Mozambique is the country most affected by cyclone Idai, one of the worst weather disasters in African history.
Cyclone Idai made landfall on the coast of Mozambique on March 14, causing floods and winds of up to 170 kilometers per hour and leaving at least 468 dead.
The provinces of Manica and Sofala, in the center of Mozambique and where some 4.4 million people live, according to the 2017 census, have been the most punished by the cyclone, category 4.
The UN has described the disaster caused by Idai in Mozambique and Zimbabwe as a level 3 emergency, a category that right now in the world only have humanitarian emergencies in Syria and Yemen.