Afghanistan: Kabul ambulance service - another busy day saving lives

Kabul ambulance service responded with eight ambulances to the bombing of a police academy bus outside the police headquarters in downtown Kabul on 17 June. The bombing claimed almost three dozen lives, and left dozens more wounded at the scene.

As the explosion occurred close to Jumhoriya Hospital, many of the wounded were taken there.

The ambulance service provided immediate life-saving first aid and transported seven of the wounded to hospitals, as well as recovering the remains of two victims. They then ferried a large number of the wounded from Jumhoriya to other Kabul hospitals, to spread the medical caseload. "It was one of our busiest days," said Lars Tore Kjerland, the Norwegian Red Cross Ambulance Service Coordinator. "Eight of our 13 ambulances were tied up with this task for much of the morning."

Kabul Ambulance Service commenced operations in 2002 and remains Kabul City's only organized ambulance service. Over 100 well-trained and dedicated Afghan staff members have operated around the clock since 2002, supporting Afghan citizens in need.

"The staff responded quickly and provided urgent medical care for the many police and civilian victims of this bombing," Kjerland concluded.

The ICRC meanwhile responded to a request from the Ministry of Public Health to provide emergency war-wounded assistance for up to 50 surgical patients injured as a result of the bombing.

For further information, please contact:

Michael O'Brien, ICRC Kabul, tel: +93700 282 719