Posts Tagged ‘rescuer injured’

Meet rescuer Ayman Shahwan

July 13, 2014

Originally posted here

AR-140719728.jpg&MaxW=960&imageVersion=defaultFor 15 years, Ayman Shahwan has raced his ambulance through the death and destruction of Gaza’s seemingly unending war with Israel.

Braving the threat of air strikes and shelling, he has ferried scores of wounded men, women and children — and presumably fighters — to hospital from the wreckage of bombed-out Gaza homes. Often, he arrives to the grim aftermath of body parts that he must also collect for the authorities to identify.

“Sometimes you think this could be the end of your life. But you have to do this because there is no one else who will,” Mr Shahwan, 42, said during a short break at Gaza City’s Tel Al Hawa neighbourhood ambulance station. (more…)

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“We leave without expecting to return”: meeting the firefighters of Gaza

April 10, 2014

trucks

Originally posted at Paramedics in Gaza

Yesterday I visited the Civil Defence Directorate, which provides the fire and rescue service in Gaza, as well as some emergency ambulances and marine rescue. These guys have a reputation as being fearless, as well as being the most vulnerable to attack during times of war. In the 2008-9 war, 13 Civil Defence workers were killed in the line of duty, with 31 injured. This includes medics killed in their ambulances by snipers and firefighters injured by secondary drone attacks while rescuing victims of the initial strikes. These risks are additional to jobs which are considered dangerous even in peaceful countries like the UK and USA.

I found out plenty about the Civil Defence’s ambulance service, including interviewing staff and looking around muralthe ambulances and equipment stores, but I’m going to save that for a later post and just write about the firefighters. In the UK, the ambulance service and fire service are separate so please forgive any ignorance about the equipment and vehicles I saw. I knew they were fire engines because they were big and red, and I knew it was a fire station because there were some weights in the corner and a ping pong table. Beyond that, it was all new to find out. (more…)