Wiltshire rescuers in Haiti

A Wiltshire firefighter who is a member of one of the rescue teams in Haiti says the chances of still finding people alive will "fall massively'' as the days go on.

Dan Cooke, who is working with a team from Rapid UK, said his team rescued two people on Saturday and two on Friday.

He said: "It is more than we would usually come across. The people are very tough as a nation and the weather conditions help to keep people alive but as the days go on the chances of people surviving fall massively.

"There are 1,700 rescue workers here and there is work for everyone which gives some sense of the scale of what has happened.''

Mr Cooke's team used hammers and chisels to free a woman trapped beneath a collapsed concrete building in Port-au-Prince.

It took them six hours to dig the 39 year-old woman out.

He said: "It's a great lift but people think it's like scoring a point or scoring a goal and it's not. The moment you've done that you look around and see there is something else to do. It doesn't change the fact this is a catastrophe.''

Mr Cooke said his team was one of 47 working across the capital in often dangerous conditions.

He said: "You hear gunfire, you see gangs of youths carrying machetes but to some extent that is part of the culture here. We are doing quite well. The UN security forces are attaching themselves to us and some teams have brought their own armed security. We have been working with other teams and local people and
they have been fantastic.

"The conditions were very hot and dusty. There is always a smell of the dead and sometimes it is extremely potent. There are some very horrific scenes.''

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