This is the 7th occasion of TAP supporting the work of relevant services in northern Greece. It regards the provision of equipment to the Thessaloniki-based 2nd Disaster Response Unit (EMAK). Specifically, TAP will support the purchase of mountaineering equipment for severely cold temperatures (clothes, boots, backpacks) and a rescue boat, with the goods expected to be delivered within 2020.
TAP’s collaboration with the Greek Emergency and Rescue Services predates the beginning of construction activities in Greece. For the past 4 years, TAP has been actively supporting their work via contributions of special equipment, which is key in ensuring the safety of rescue workers, as well as the people they’re called upon to assist.
- In January 2016, TAP provided the Civil Protection Service in Evros with emergency gear, personal protective equipment (PPE) and a remotely controlled unmanned drone to facilitate searches in inaccessible areas.
- In November 2016, TAP offered resources to the Central Macedonia Fire Brigade, used for the maintenance of its fleet of fire engines and the procurement of specialised equipment. For this initiative, TAP received an honourary award.
- In February 2016, the Voluntary Disaster Response Team (ETAK) in Kastoria received from TAP emergency and rescue gear and equipment, including suits, tents, radiocommunications equipment, gurneys, defibrillators, generators and ropes.
- In October 2017, the Kavala branch of the Hellenic Rescue Team (volunteer group) received climbing ropes and other climbing material, helmets, telecommunication devices, as well as a water pump to deal with floodings.
- In December 2018, the Komotini-based 4th EMAK was provided with special climbing and mountaineering equipment, such as helmets, harnesses, belay devices, carabiners, belts, pulleys, ropes, etc.
- Lastly, within 2020, a heating/cooling system will also be delivered to the Fire Service of the Kavala Port.
For these initiatives and their contribution to critical rescue work, volunteer rescuer Charalambos Savvidis from ETAK stated: "TAP’s offer has really made a difference for our team. During the three years since receiving the equipment, it’s in constant use both in training and in actual operations; i.e. when we’re called upon by the fire brigade or the police to assist in rescue cases. And it also perfectly serves the moto of our voluntary group: ‘Protecting myself and others’."
In addition, one and a half year after the equipment was delivered to the 4th EMAK, the Unit’s Commander Spyros Koutras, Lieutenant Fire Colonel, noted that "the effectiveness of our Service in addressing rescue cases has increased, to the benefit of both citizens and visitors of the Eastern Macedonia-Thrace Region." He also thanked TAP for its gracious, as well as purposeful, gesture.
TAP’s investments are being implemented in collaboration with the Bodossaki Foundation and the Social Solidarity Network, its partners in the implementation of the overall SEI programme.