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Another Integrated Emergency Response Centre Now Serves Firefighters and Paramedics

The unique Integrated Emergency Response Centre (IERC), costing nearly CZK 260 million (including project preparation and technologies), has been built at Leoš Janáček Airport in Ostrava. The outdated airport fire-fighter station has been replaced with a modern building which now also houses paramedics.

The Moravian-Silesian Region managed to obtain all the funds for the building – which houses the Ostrava Airport Fire Rescue Service (HZS LO, a.s.) and the Emergency Medical Services of the Moravian-Silesian Region (ZZS MSK) under one roof – from European funds. Construction work began in December 2014.

"The construction of Integrated Security Centres, where individual security forces share common spaces and technologies, will primarily enable more rapid and effective response, and in addition operation is less expensive. We collate the requirements of the security forces at the Security Council and decide where to direct the funds. For the construction of the IERC, we managed to use European funds to the maximum extent possible," said Miroslav Novák, Governor of the Moravian-Silesian Region and Chairman of the Security Council and the Regional Crisis Staff. "The modern new building at Mošnov Airport will contribute to faster response and improved fire safety conditions of airport operations, and provide cutting-edge facilities for special training for firefighters on the polygon. They are ready to respond in the event of emergencies and aircraft accidents. Although we believe that nothing like that will happen, it is better to be prepared for these situations. Firefighters can now flexibly coordinate their work with paramedics, who no longer have to travel from their former station in Kopřivnice," said Governor Miroslav Novák.

Garages for two ambulances and two passenger cars, rooms, a lounge with a kitchen, a dining room and sanitary facilities are available to the paramedics in the new response centre at Leoš Janáček Airport in Ostrava. The Firefighters use the garages, changing rooms, offices and spaces for firefighter training and education. While the spaces for the Emergency Medical Services of the Moravian-Silesian Region (ZZS MSK) are located in a public area, all areas for HZS LO, a.s. are in a non-public (Schengen) area and require special security rules for entry and monitoring.

"The Moravian-Silesian Region pays great attention to the safety of its population. In terms of technical equipment and facilities for the security forces, I can proudly say that our situation is the best of all regions of the Czech Republic, which is in fact confirmed by the users themselves. Over the past 15 years, over CZK 250 million from the budget of the Moravian-Silesian Region has been invested in equipping the Fire Rescue Service of the Moravian-Silesian Region and for the programming period 2007 – 2013 the Region managed to obtain about CZK 1.9 billion from European funds for technical equipment purchases and the construction of buildings serving the security forces in the Region," said Josef Babka, 1st Deputy Governor of the Moravian-Silesian Region and Chairman of the Security Committee and Integrated Rescue Service. "The new building at Leoš Janáček Airport in Ostrava is the second facility for security forces after the IERC in Město Albrechtice that we have opened. April will witness the grand opening of two more unique buildings - in Třinec and Ostrava-Jih. We also plan to build two smaller IERCs in Vrbno pod Pradědem and in Jablunkov, and possibly also in Český Těšín, to fully cover the Region," said Josef Babka, 1st Deputy Governor of the Moravian-Silesian Region.

The Fire Rescue Service unit at Leoš Janáček Airport in Ostrava is mainly used to ensure fire safety at the airport. It also responds to traffic accidents near the airport, and cleans up after accidents and natural disasters. It is ready to respond in the event of aviation emergencies. Airport firefighters have special cutting-edge technology, used, for example, to rescue unserviceable aircraft. The centre also houses a unique training polygon.

"We are glad that it was possible to build the new IERC at the airport that also houses the Fire Rescue Service. The original Fire Rescue Service building was built back in 1985 and no longer met the requirements for the operation of an international airport," said Chief Executive Officer of the Ostrava airport, Pavel Schneider. "The integrated centre is built in the middle of the airport – at an equal distance to both ends of the take-off and landing runway, allowing shorter arrival times in the event of any necessary emergency response by the firefighters," Schneider added.

The ambulance crew has been transferred to the IERC from Frýdek-Místek. It serves the airport and part of the Nový Jičín and Frýdek-Místek area with round-the-clock operation. The paramedics in this area are frequently called out to traffic accidents because there is an important and widely used arterial road leading towards Ostrava and Poland around the airport.

"The transfer of the crew from Frýdek-Místek to the new dispatch station allows us to effectively respond not only around the airport and in the adjacent industrial zone, but also in the surrounding small towns in both the Nový Jičín and Frýdek-Místek areas. This is another step towards optimising the Emergency Medical Services station network to cover the whole Region. During the day, the crew works as an emergency medical service, at night as an emergency paramedic service," said Director of the Emergency Medical Services of the Moravian-Silesian Region, Roman Gřegoř.

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