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Drahoslav Ryba

MG Drahoslav Ryba

Dear friends,

Lately we have witnessed a growing complexity and prevalence of security threats and resulting risks, directly or indirectly affecting our ability to protect Czech citizens and critical infrastructure. Units of the Security System of the Czech Republic therefore need to constantly adapt their competencies in order to be able to react to potential threats, which can concatenate, and their impacts on the protected interests of the society can be multiplied. In light of the growing number of natural and man-made disasters (including the migration crisis) and the severity of their consequences, targeted integrated approach to reduce the impact of these adverse events is becoming increasingly imperative.

Contemporary cross-linked and interconnected society is becoming more and more vulnerable and must face new challenges in protecting the population and its infrastructure. This is reflected in the new approaches of the society not only towards dealing with the consequences of adverse events, but essentially towards their prevention, and the development of materially-technical preparedness.

At this point I would like to emphasize importance of developing the material base concerning the equipment of all units of the Integrated Rescue System. Based on the good experience with some of the well-tried domestic suppliers of rescue equipment and technology, we would like to continue to cooperate with them. A wider international cooperation in the above area also represents an important and increasingly significant factor contributing to reducing the consequences of such events.

Fire Rescue Service of the Czech Republic (FRC CR) within the Integrated Rescue System of the Czech Republic together with other security forces endeavours to save lives, health, and possessions of the citizens not only in the Czech Republic but also beyond. An important role of the Fire Rescue Service is not only fighting fires, but also to come to the rescue during other emergencies, such as various natural disasters, and industrial and road accidents. Moreover, it has recently undertaken an important task to provide domestic and international humanitarian aid.

I would hereto like to mention material humanitarian assistance provided to Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Ukraine. However, we have also delivered aid in more distant places, such as in Japan and Nepal. During the recent months, in connection with the refugee crisis, vehicles loaded with fully furnished tents were dispatched to Hungary, Croatia, Macedonia and Slovenia. Furthermore, members of the Fire Rescue Service participated in the construction of the tent detention facility in Breclav-Poštorná and Jezova-Bela in Mlada Boleslav region.   European Union projects have also significantly helped to improve technical equipment of the Fire Rescue Service. It can be proudly said that the overall preparedness for all types of emergencies is being constantly developed and improved. Not only firefighters, but all bodies of the Integrated Rescue System, state administration, local governments and NGOs have learned to deal with with such events with much better efficiency.

International cooperation involving both neighborly bilateral and multilateral support in dealing with emergencies, including the provision of material and humanitarian aid, has proved to be increasingly vital.   I am convinced that with an ever-increasing intensity, scope and frequency of non-military emergency situations a greater success in managing them and minimizing subsequent losses of human lives, damages to public health, property values, and the environment will be achieved. This is also affirmed by the gradual improvement of the population readiness to adequately respond to an imminent or already incurred emergency situation.  A new Act on the Fire Rescue Service will come in force from January 1st, 2016. It will replace the existing Act of 2000, which was deficient in a number of legal solutions that are standard at the Security Forces nowadays. The Act on the FRS newly establishes or modifies some of its authorities. The Act maintains the current status and mission of the FRS, but it clarifies and amends its various parts. The new Act on the Fire Rescue Service has the potential to contribute to the development of skills needed to ensure security of the Czech Republic by completing tasks of the fire protection, population protection, civil emergency planning, Integrated Rescue System, crisis management and other existing tasks.

I have the honor to inform you that the Fire Rescue Service of the Czech Republic became part of Future Forces Forum and will be presented at the exhibition, as well as on the second World CBRN and medical Congress with a presentation on "CBRN preparedness and response in the Czech Republic." I am convinced that the Future Forces Forum is a platform of global network where all stakeholders can exchange information and present the latest technologies, materials and processes in the field of security.

MG Drahoslav RYBA
Director General of the Fire Rescue Service of the Czech Republic

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