Search dogs train in Christchurch rubble
It's a "real world" exercise for the search dogs, with Christchurch's mountainous demolition sites proving perfect conditions to train USAR's team of canines. “Massive columns, steel – there's a lot of drama,” says Bill Johnson of Ceres Environmental.
“It's very similar to what the dogs might face in real life, so they felt like this would be a good location for them.” The dogs are critical in finding people trapped in buildings or under rubble, completing more than 80 searches following the February quake. “It's just the type of dogs they are,” says Tim Drennan of the New Zealand USAR Search Dog Association.
“They're all based around working breeds and we select them because they are so highly driven.”