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A400M Atlas has transported UK search and rescue teams to Morocco following earthquake

Two RAF A400M Atlas are transporting UK search and rescue teams to Morocco following the 6.8 magnitude earthquake. The teams include sixty search and rescue specialists, a medical assessment team, four search dogs and rescue equipment.

The first aircraft took off from RAF Brize Norton earlier this evening and the second aircraft will follow shortly. The A400M Atlas has the ability to carry 37-tonnes over 2,000 miles, which enables it to transport the teams to Marrakech without refuelling.

"This is a devastating time for the people of Morocco, particularly those with loved ones they have lost or are missing. The UK has taken a leading role in the international effort to enhance search and rescue operations - moving quickly to deploy our unique strategic airlift capabilities, expert personnel and aid. We stand firmly by Morocco as they get through this terrible event."

Grant Shapps
Defence Secretary

The UK International Search and Rescue team (UKISAR) respond to disasters on behalf of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. They have specialist search equipment including seismic listening devices, concrete cutting and breaking equipment, propping and shoring tools. The specialist kit gives the team the capacity to lift, cut and remove concrete and rubble to reach people under collapsed buildings.

The UK Emergency Medical Team (EMT) is deploying a four person British medical assessment team to assess the situation on the ground and coordinate with Moroccan authorities.