EMERGENCY responders from Hampshire who joined the relief effort in Japan following the earthquake and tsunami there will be able to put their best foot forward in safety – thanks to new boots.
The Hampshire Fire & Rescue specialists are part of the UK-ISAR (International Search and Rescue) team which flies out to help countries hit by natural disasters.
Members have also flown out to New Zealand and Haiti following devastating earthquakes.
Now a Bishop’s Waltham company has donated 36 pairs of its specialist Rapid Reaction boots for the team from Hampshire to use in future missions.
Mitre Blue Light managing director, Amelie Turner, contacted the Urban Search and Rescue team at the fire service HQ in Eastleigh when she saw footage of them heading out to Japan.
She said: ‘It was only a small thing for us but it at least feels like we have done something to help them with this vital work that they do.’
Her company supplies protective footwear and public order boots to 70 per cent of the UK’s police forces and is branching out to supply the other emergency services and other business sectors too.
Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service station manager Alec Martin said: ‘When Amelie contacted the office with her generous offer we snapped her arm off for them.
‘The boots she has given us are superb for day-to-day activities for the teams.
‘They have gone down very well with the team – no blisters and not a single whinge from any of them.’
The Hampshire Fire and Rescue Rope Team is also using the boots.