The Training Centre for Civil Protection and Disaster Relief (ICZR) in Ig, Slovenia, hosted the first training course on short-term shoring of damaged building as part of urban search and rescue activities (USAR) between 24 and 26 February 2020. The training was organized for the participants of the Full Scale Exercise SIQUAKE2020.

Twenty members of civil protection units from Kranj and Celje region with previous knowledge of technical rescue participated in the course.  The training included theoretical and practical part and was conducted on the training facilities and different simulators at ICZR. As part of the theoretical training, the participants have gained the knowledge about the first aid and rescue activities in damaged buildings, constructional elements of the buildings, statics, types and forms of damaged buildings and rubble, rescue equipment, shoring of damaged buildings, load-bearing capacity of supporting elements, appropriate materials, procedures and methods for shoring, shoring with wood and modern construction elements and about safety and health in such interventions. Practical part of the training on second and third day was carried out in groups and has started by preparing the tools and equipment, preparing and using the wedges. At the beginning, the participants have trained the simple shoring of the doors, windows, ceilings, narrow aisles and walls, followed by the search and rescue in damaged buildings, in combination with simple shoring.

Lecturers and instructors who participated in the project Establishment of an international module for after-earthquake risk assessment and short-term shoring of buildings after the earthquake – MATILDA and other experts from the field of carpentry and construction conducted the training. During the training, the trainers and instructors directed and supervised the work of the participants and checked their understanding of the matter and their knowledge.

Due to the complexity and possible safety risks, special attention by the instructors and the participants was given to the use of personal protective equipment and procedures for safe and healthy work in such cases.