Urban Search and Rescue team simulates parking garage collapse during test

Published: May. 21, 2022 at 4:34 PM EDT|Updated: May. 21, 2022 at 11:13 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Dozens of Lowcountry firefighters that make up South Carolina Task Force 3 put their skills to the test and proving their operational readiness by simulating a parking garage collapse in Charleston.

The Urban Search and Rescue task force’s annual Operational Readiness Exercise was held at Charleston Fire’s training center Saturday morning.

Task Force 3 is one of five Urban Search and Rescue Task Forces in South Carolina. It’s made up of members from the Charleston, North Charleston, Summerville, Saint Andrews, James Island, Johns Island and Mount Pleasant fire departments.

For hours, members cut through the pile, used the Jaws of Life and got victims out of the rubble pile.

The task force has previously been called to assist after floods swept through Georgetown following Hurricane Dorian and put on standby after tornadoes touched down in the Midlands two months ago..

The commander says a majority of its members have been on the task force for over 10 years.

“Any storm event, hurricanes, structural collapse, any technical hazards that exceed the realm of normal fire department operations, this team is capable of handling and performing at a higher level to complete the task and help our citizens,” Task Force 3 Commander Kyle Bishop said.

Task force members said training like this not only helps them perfect their skills but gets them ready in case their help is needed.

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