On the 6 th of February 2023, unusually strong earthquakes shook the region around the Eastern Anatolian fault system. The 7.8-magnitude earthquake in the morning was followed by several equally devastating aftershocks.
The epicentre of the earthquakes was near Kahramanmaras in Turkey. The natural disaster also affected densely populated areas and large cities both in Syrian and in Turkey.
The rescue operations have not yet been completed, but the authorities coordinating the rescue have reported more than 30,000 deaths in addition to hundreds of thousands of injured.
Countries of the World immediately responded to the news of the earthquake, countless countries sent their special technical-rescue units, urban research-rescue teams, and medical units experienced in disaster management.
Many civilian and several state organizations set off from Hungary to participate in the rescue operations with their experience and knowledge, with specially trained dogs, and tools to help find the survivors trapped under the ruins of collapsed buildings and to help with their rescue and medical care.
Two doctors from the Hungarian Cave Rescue Service, Dr. Judit Tóth and Dr. Ákos Dénes Nagy, are also on the scene. They arrived in the region on the 7th of February as members of a group of civilian doctors coordinated by the Hungarian Counter-Terrorism Center. According to their report, they are not only helping the rescue organizations with their work at the ruins, but they have also created an improvised care centre where they provide medical care for the survivors. dr. Zsuzsanna Löcher with her rescue dog "Scott" also helps in the rescue operation.
In addition to our doctors, Major Tamás Pinkóczi (form the Fire Brigade), who is our supporting member, was among the first to arrive in the Antalya area with the HUNOR rescue team. Our other supporting member, First-lieutenant Szilárd Égető (also (form the Fire Brigade)), arrived in Kahramanmaras with a convoy organized by the Catholic Caritas Organisation. They search for survivors under the ruins, and participate in the rescue operations.
By the hard work of the Hungarian rescue organizations involved in the rescue, so far they have been able to rescue more than 30 survivors from under the ruins.
According to search and rescue specialists, a person with an average physique has a realistic chance of staying alive under the rubble is about 10 days. The survivors trapped under the ruins are already spending their 6-7th day waiting for outside help, isolated, many with injuries, hungry and thirsty and exposed to the risk of hyperthermia. Under the current circumstances, the chances of survival of those in need of help are deteriorating day by day, so the rescue units are racing against time.
The authorities coordinating the rescue must not only coordinate the search and rescue work, which requires extraordinary manpower and resources, but must also create the rescue infrastructure, as well as the care for the survivors and the prevention of humanitarian disasters.
We wish our fellow cave rescue members a successful work in Turkey.
dr. Judit Tóth reporst on the TV scene at 6 min 27 sec: CLICK HERE
Photo: dr. Dénes Ákos Nagy