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urban search and rescue

Matias Micheletto, Vinicius Petrucci, Rodrigo Santos, Javier Orozco, Daniel Mosse, Sergio F Ochoa, Roc Meseguer
While there have been important advances within wireless communication technology, the provision of communication support during disaster relief activities remains an open issue. The literature in disaster research reports several major restrictions to conducting first response activities in urban areas, given the limitations of telephone networks and radio systems to provide digital communication in the field. In search-and-rescue operations, the communication requirements are increased, since the first responders need to rely on real-time and reliable communication to perform their activities and coordinate their efforts with other teams...
May 22, 2018: Sensors
Andreas T Güntner, Nicolay J Pineau, Paweł Mochalski, Helmut Wiesenhofer, Agapios Agapiou, Christopher A Mayhew, Sotiris E Pratsinis
Earthquakes are lethal natural disasters frequently burying people alive under collapsed buildings. Tracking entrapped humans from their unique volatile chemical signature with hand-held devices would accelerate urban search and rescue (USaR) efforts. Here, a pilot study is presented with compact and orthogonal sensor arrays to detect the breath- and skin-emitted metabolic tracers acetone, ammonia, isoprene, CO2 , and relative humidity (RH), all together serving as sign of life. It consists of three nanostructured metal-oxide sensors (Si-doped WO3 , Si-doped MoO3 , and Ti-doped ZnO), each specifically tailored at the nanoscale for highly sensitive and selective tracer detection along with commercial CO2 and humidity sensors...
April 17, 2018: Analytical Chemistry
Marc Blancher, François Albasini, Fidel Elsensohn, Ken Zafren, Natalie Hölzl, Kyle McLaughlin, Albert R Wheeler, Steven Roy, Hermann Brugger, Mike Greene, Peter Paal
Blancher, Marc, François Albasini, Fidel Elsensohn, Ken Zafren, Natalie Hölzl, Kyle McLaughlin, Albert R. Wheeler III, Steven Roy, Hermann Brugger, Mike Greene, and Peter Paal. Management of multi-casualty incidents in mountain rescue. High Alt Med Biol. 00:000-000, 2018. INTRODUCTION: Multi-Casualty Incidents (MCI) occur in mountain areas. Little is known about the incidence and character of such events, and the kind of rescue response. Therefore, the International Commission for Mountain Emergency Medicine (ICAR MEDCOM) set out to provide recommendations for the management of MCI in mountain areas...
February 15, 2018: High Altitude Medicine & Biology
Pawel Mochalski, Veronika Ruzsanyi, Helmut Wiesenhofer, Chris A Mayhew
There is a growing demand for rapid analytical systems to detect the presence of humans who are either entrapped as a result of a disaster or, in particular, hidden, as in the case of smuggling or trafficking. The trafficking and smuggling of people to Europe have reached epidemic proportions in recent years. This does not only put a major strain on European resources, but puts at risk the health and lives of the people being trafficked or smuggled. In this context, the early detection and interception of smuggled/trafficked people is of particular importance in terms of saving migrants from life-threatening situations...
February 6, 2018: Journal of Breath Research
Lei Zhan, Li J Yang, Yu Huang, Qing He, Guan J Liu
BACKGROUND: Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is a major cause of death worldwide. Cardiac arrest can be subdivided into asphyxial and non asphyxial etiologies. An asphyxia arrest is caused by lack of oxygen in the blood and occurs in drowning and choking victims and in other circumstances. A non asphyxial arrest is usually a loss of functioning cardiac electrical activity. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a well-established treatment for cardiac arrest. Conventional CPR includes both chest compressions and 'rescue breathing' such as mouth-to-mouth breathing...
March 27, 2017: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews
Zhuorui Yang, Aura Ganz
In this paper, we introduce a vision-based localization algorithm that can accurately track responders during rescue operations in urban areas that are Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)-denied. The proposed algorithm works successfully with the rich visual features of an urban environment and obtains an average localization accuracy of 2.5 ft. In addition, we also provide a 3D representation of the disaster field which reflects the current conditions of the site.
August 2016: Conference Proceedings: Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society
Zhuorui Yang, Aura Ganz, Zhuorui Yang, Aura Ganz, Zhuorui Yang, Aura Ganz
In this paper, we introduce a vision-based localization algorithm that can accurately track responders during rescue operations in urban areas that are Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)-denied. The proposed algorithm works successfully with the rich visual features of an urban environment and obtains an average localization accuracy of 2.5 ft. In addition, we also provide a 3D representation of the disaster field which reflects the current conditions of the site.
August 2016: Conference Proceedings: Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society
Matt B Brearley, Ian Norton, Daryl Rush, Michael Hutton, Steve Smith, Linda Ward, Hector Fuentes
OBJECTIVE: To examine whether non-heat acclimatized (NHA) emergency responders endure greater physiological and perceptual strain than heat acclimatized (HA) counterparts in tropical field settings. METHODS: Eight HA and eight NHA men urban search and rescue personnel had physiological and perceptual responses compared during the initial 4 hours shift of a simulated disaster in tropical conditions (ambient temperature 34.0 °C, 48% relative humidity, wet bulb globe temperature [WBGT] 31...
December 2016: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Jiaming Yan, Hong Hong, Heng Zhao, Yusheng Li, Chen Gu, Xiaohua Zhu
Targets located at the same distance are easily neglected in most through-wall multiple targets detecting applications which use the single-input single-output (SISO) ultra-wideband (UWB) radar system. In this paper, a novel multiple targets vital signs tracking algorithm for through-wall detection using SISO UWB radar has been proposed. Taking advantage of the high-resolution decomposition of the Variational Mode Decomposition (VMD) based algorithm, the respiration signals of different targets can be decomposed into different sub-signals, and then, we can track the time-varying respiration signals accurately when human targets located in the same distance...
August 15, 2016: Sensors
P Armstrong, K D Nizio, K A Perrault, S L Forbes
Following a mass disaster, it is important that victims are rapidly located as the chances of survival decrease greatly after approximately 48 h. Urban search and rescue (USAR) teams may use a range of tools to assist their efforts but detector dogs still remain one of the most effective search tools to locate victims of mass disasters. USAR teams can choose to deploy human scent dogs (trained to locate living victims) or human remains detection (HRD) dogs (trained to locate deceased victims). However, little is known about the variation between live human scent and postmortem human remains scent and the timeframe during which one type of scent transitions to the other...
February 2016: Heliyon
Timothy L Edwards, Kate B La Londe, Christophe Cox, Bart Weetjens, Alan Poling
Standard operating procedures have been developed to train Cricetomys to locate humans in collapsed structures and return to the release point on command. The present study demonstrated that the schedule of reinforcement for target location influences the rats' performance. Rats required more time to locate targets when no reinforcement was arranged for target location but less time to return to the release point. These findings suggest that training conditions should be based on the priority assigned to target location and return in an operational scenario...
March 2016: Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis
Peter Tatham, Karen Spens
The challenges of achieving successful inter-agency logistic coordination in preparing for and responding to natural disasters and complex emergencies are both well understood and well documented. However, although many of these challenges remain unresolved, the literature reveals that the organisations that form the urban search and rescue (USAR) community have attained a high level of coherence and interoperability that results in a highly efficient and effective response. Therefore, this paper uses the idea of 'borrowing' from other fields as it explores how the processes and procedures used by the USAR community might be applied to improve humanitarian logistic operations...
April 2016: Disasters
Marta Ciesa, Stefano Grigolato, Raffaele Cavalli
OBJECTIVES: The rising number of people involved in outdoor recreation and tourism in mountain forest and wilderness areas close to urban areas has led to an increase of rescue efforts in the last decades. The study analyzes rescue operations in 2 mountain areas of the Veneto Prealps in Italy. METHODS: A retrospective review of search and rescue incident reports for a 20-year period was performed. The study also takes into consideration any differences between accidents in the 2 areas in relation to the morphology and mountain activities involved...
June 2015: Wilderness & Environmental Medicine
Arkadiusz Sołtysiak
Urbanization at Tell Brak began in the late 5th millennium BCE and the site reached its maximum size in the Late Chalcolithic (LC) 3, ca. 3900-3600 BCE. During that time, a large midden was formed at the edge of the early city, now known as Tell Majnuna. Rescue excavations at Tell Majnuna revealed several clusters of commingled human remains and a cemetery on the top. Several human skeletons dated to the LC 3 and Early Bronze Age (EBA) were found also at Tell Brak itself and it was possible to investigate differences in cross-sectional femoral and tibial shaft shapes between LC 3 and EBA to test the hypothesis that rapid and extensive urbanization in the LC 3 induced increase in mobility...
April 2015: Homo: Internationale Zeitschrift Für die Vergleichende Forschung Am Menschen
Jenny T Visser, Adam F R Campbell
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to describe the range and types of medical and traumatic conditions encountered in land search and rescue operations in New Zealand. METHODS: Twenty months (May 2010 to December 2011) of land search and rescue operations were analyzed. Data on medical and traumatic conditions were extracted from the New Zealand Police search and rescue database. RESULTS: During the period audited, New Zealand Police coordinated 1490 land-based search and rescue operations, from which 611 persons fulfilled the study inclusion criteria...
December 2014: Wilderness & Environmental Medicine
Joseph G Kotora, Michael S Westrol, Mark A Merlin
OBJECTIVE: Accurate medical evaluation of victims injured during confined space rescues poses significant operational, medical, and logistical challenges for medical providers of all disciplines and experience levels. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) teaches rescuers to begin their assessment as soon as verbal contact is obtained with the victim. While a significant amount of information can be obtained by talking to the victim, an accurate assessment of the victim's condition is often limited or impossible...
2014: American Journal of Disaster Medicine
Paweł Mochalski, Julian King, Karl Unterkofler, Hartmann Hinterhuber, Anton Amann
Gas chromatography with mass spectrometric detection (GC-MS) coupled with solid phase micro-extraction as pre-concentration method (SPME) was applied to identify and quantify volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by human skin. A total of 64 C4-C10 compounds were quantified in skin emanation of 31 healthy volunteers. Amongst them aldehydes and hydrocarbons were the predominant chemical families with eighteen and seventeen species, respectively. Apart from these, there were eight ketones, six heterocyclic compounds, six terpenes, four esters, two alcohols, two volatile sulphur compounds, and one nitrile...
May 15, 2014: Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences
Barzin Doroodgar, Yugang Liu, Goldie Nejat
Semi-autonomous control schemes can address the limitations of both teleoperation and fully autonomous robotic control of rescue robots in disaster environments by allowing a human operator to cooperate and share such tasks with a rescue robot as navigation, exploration, and victim identification. In this paper, we present a unique hierarchical reinforcement learning-based semi-autonomous control architecture for rescue robots operating in cluttered and unknown urban search and rescue (USAR) environments. The aim of the controller is to enable a rescue robot to continuously learn from its own experiences in an environment in order to improve its overall performance in exploration of unknown disaster scenes...
December 2014: IEEE Transactions on Cybernetics
M Statheropoulos, G C Pallis, K Mikedi, S Giannoukos, A Agapiou, A Pappa, A Cole, W Vautz, C L Paul Thomas
The design, development, and validation of a dynamic vapor generator are presented. The generator simulates human scent (odor) emissions from trapped victims in the voids of collapsed buildings. The validation of the device was carried out using a reference detector: a quadrupole mass spectrometer equipped with a pulsed sampling (PS-MS) system. A series of experiments were conducted for evaluating the simulator's performance, defining types and weights of different factors, and proposing further optimization of the device...
April 15, 2014: Analytical Chemistry
Paweł Mochalski, Karl Unterkofler, Hartmann Hinterhuber, Anton Amann
Selective reagent ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry with NO(+) as the reagent ion (SRI-TOF-MS (NO(+))) was applied for near real-time monitoring of selected skin-borne constituents which are potential markers of human presence. The experimental protocol involved a group of 10 healthy volunteers enclosed in a body plethysmography chamber mimicking the entrapment environment. A total of 12 preselected omnipresent in human scent volatiles were quantitatively monitored. Among them there were six aldehydes (n-propanal, n-hexanal, n-heptanal, n-octanal, n-nonanal, and 2 methyl 2-propenal), four ketones (acetone, 2-butanone, 3-buten-2-one, and 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one), one hydrocarbon (2-methyl 2-pentene), and one terpene (DL-limonene)...
April 15, 2014: Analytical Chemistry
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