Slovakia is sending 25 firefighters with 13 pieces of equipment to help with the floods in Italy. The equipment will ensure their self-sufficiency and enable their continuous deployment for 14 days.
"The most important part of their equipment are two large-capacity pumps, which together enable the pumping out 6,000 cubic metres of water per hour," said Interior Ministry spokesperson Zuzana Eliasova on Sunday.
To put that into perspective, the amount is more than two-and-a-half times as big as an Olympic Swimming Pool.
Italy is being plagued by floods and landslides following severe rainfall. More than 20 rivers have overflowed and almost 300 landslides reported, with the worst situation in the Emilia-Romagna region in the north-east. Thousands of people have lost their homes.Slovaks will help to address Italy's issue with bears Read more
The country activated the EU Civil Protection Mechanism at 11.47 PM on Saturday (May 20) and asked for four High Capacity Pumping modules. Slovakia responded in a short time (at 1.47 AM on Sunday) by offering one such module.
The Slovak team is composed of firefighters from several fire stations based in the Bratislava, Trnava and Trenčín regions. They were dispatched to Italy from Bratislava at 7 PM on Sunday.
Slovakia often sends firefighters and equipment to disaster-stricken areas. In early February, firefighters and mountain rescuers were dispatched to Turkey following the devastating earthquake. In the past, teams of firefighters were often sent to Greece to help combat wildfires.