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Nov 9, 2020

Belize Coast Guard Comes to the Rescue!!!

In times of crisis, the Belize Coast Guard is a critical component of the national emergency response mechanism. Since the flooding began last week in the Cayo District, the Belize Coast Guard formed part of a contingent of agencies including BATSUB and the B.D.F. to carry out rescue and relief efforts in the west. The operations were spearheaded by the National Emergency Management Organization, N.E.M.O. but it was the soldiers and officers on the ground assisting families who were affected by the flooding. In Calla Creek, a family was in distress and trapped on their roof. Acting Commandant, Belize Coast Guard Lieutenant Greg Soberanis shared details on how that rescue operation went. 


Greg Soberanis

Lt. Greg Soberanis, Acting Commandant, Belize Coast Guard

“We were able to rescue and evacuate   thirty two personnel, eighteen males, seven females and eight children. We also were able to provide as it relates to the relief efforts over five hundred pantry packages, over six hundred gallons of water and we were also able to assist with the distribution of food from the Mennonite communities. Of course this was a collaborative efforts between all the agencies that I mentioned earlier. The Calla Creek area was inundated by water. The currents were really strong in that area and we were informed of the situation there. At the time we got the call it was late in the evening, we did our risk assessment and based on several factors that had transpired within the river for example the bridge was washed away, there were loose cables in the water. That type of thing and it provided some sense of risks so we were trying, we somewhat did some operational planning to figure out what our cost of actions would be for that particular situation. We were able to establish contact with residents in Calla Creek who said to us that they were okay, they would be fine for the night and they had advised us to wait until morning to make their way to their location. We maintain communications with those individuals throughout the night for them to be assured that the Coast Guard was going to be there. Early the following morning we were able to reach Calla Creek and we were able to execute the rescue operations for those individuals that were trapped inside their homes.”

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