Disaster relief a first test for Territorial Defence Forces

Soldiers from the Territorial Defence Forces (WOT), created two years ago, showed their capabilities after recent floods and storm.

The mission of the WOT is to defend and support the local communities. In time of peace that mission includes helping with removal of disasters effects.

The opportunity for this, came this May, after tornados hit the Lubuskie province in central Poland. A total of 200 soldiers from the 2nd Lubuskie territorial defence brigade deployed to remove trees damaged by the storm, supply local population with electricity and light up the area for other emergency services.

Some 1,200 more soldiers helped with disaster relief in the south of the country, after floods hit the region.

The efforts showed a good degree of readiness. After the emergency call for deployment was given, 95 percent of soldiers responded, about 60 percent of them responded in under three hours.

Territorial Defence Forces is a part-time reserve force of the Polish Armed Forces. It has been created after a change of strategy was deemed necessary, following the Russian aggression in Ukraine.