Cyprus Mail

Bases take part in RoC multi-national firefighting exercise

exercise pyrsos

Bases firefighters participated in multi-national exercise ‘Pyrsos’, lead by the Republic’s fire service on Wednesday, as part of the annual joint fire safety training.

The exercise, which took place in Kivides, in Limassol, simulated an agroforestry fire and saw RoC firefighting aircraft work alongside those from the bases and Jordan, who provided two helicopters, with Slovenian observers.

Pumas from the 84th bases squadron provided rainmaker support and members of the bases’ defence, fire and rescue service, (DFR) acted as ground liaison and expert advisors.

“The exercise included scenarios of wildfire near a residential area and provided a valuable opportunity to share knowledge, expertise, and best practices, not only between the two fire services but with all emergency services in the RoC,” DFR Episkopi Station Manager, Aristos Aristeidou said.

“It also helped to identify gaps and challenges in the current firefighting procedures and equipment, which will be addressed before the beginning of the hot season,” the manager said.

The station manager noted that it had been a great opportunity to trial the new Puma helicopter fleet and work on aerial coordination with other RoC aircraft.

“The joint exercise helped strengthen the existing excellent relationship between bases forces and the Republic and it enhanced our inter-operability and communication skills,” Aristeidou added.

Fire service spokesman, Andreas Kettis, for his part, said the joint fire drill, coordinated by the Cyprus fire service, aimed to establish operational readiness in preparation for the summer season.

Such fire-fighting efforts, apart from the fire service and the forestry department, are assisted by the national guard, the police, the civil defence, district administration offices, the game service, local councils and volunteers.

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