Georgia Search & Rescue
In 2003, Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) established Georgia's first Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) teams located in the central, metro, and coastal areas of the state. Over the years GEMA has established a USAR Task Force in nearly all of the state's regional areas. The Warner Robins Fire Department is a core member of the central area which is now designated Task Force 4.
Nearly one third of the department's personnel are members of this task force. Each member of this team had to complete approximately 400 hours of study and pass pro board testing as technicians in the following disciplines:
- Hazardous materials
- Rope rescue
- Confined space rescue
- Trench rescue
- Structural collapse rescue
- Wilderness search and rescue
Once the testing is complete all members are required to attend ongoing training each year on each of the above stated disciplines. These recertification days are designed to keep the members skills fresh and up to date.
GSAR Task Force 4 has deployed to many emergencies throughout the years. Some of these deployments include the G-8 summit, Louisiana's Hurricane Katrina, tornado damages, structural collapses, and land searches for missing people.
The Warner Robins Fire Department houses a logistical cache that is attached to the GSAR Task Force 4 team. This cache is essentially a tent city that has the capability to house 100 personnel at a time. This cache consists of: seven 19-by-35 foot tents, two 20 foot octagon tents, water purification capability, filed port-a-potties, and a 60 kilowatt generator.
The 19-by-35 foot tents are used for sleeping quarters, dining, and a command post. Each tent has a HVAC system, electrical capability, and is fully lighted. The 20 foot octagon tents are used as shower tents. There are six showers that can be placed in each tent for use. These too have HVAC capability.
The purification system consists of one main unit and four smaller units. The main unit can produce 20 gallons a minute of purified water. It is a closed system meaning all water is captured and recycled back through the unit. The four smaller units are to be used as field hydration units. They are designed to be carried with squads to the field and used when needed. These units are powered by a/c, d/c, or by solar panels producing one gallon per minute of purified water.
This cache also has five port-a-potties that can be assembled in minutes. These units use an eco-friendly chemical that breaks down solids and liquids into non biohazard waste and in turn can be thrown away with common household materials.
The tent city is powered by a 65 kilowatt generator that is whisper silent and runs off of diesel fuel. The whole tent city would need approximately one acre as a footprint to erect and can be operational around the clock.