Remarks of President of the Republic of Indonesia at the Inauguration of the 2023 National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) Working Meeting and the Search and Rescue Potential Coordination Forum at the Head Office of Basarnas, Central Jakarta, Special Capital Region of Jakarta, February 16, 2023

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 16 Februari 2023
Category: Remarks @en
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Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

Good morning,

May peace be upon us all,

Om swastiastu,

Namo buddhaya,

Greetings of virtue.

Distinguished Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Cultural Affairs, Cabinet Secretary,

Distinguished Head of the National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) Air Marshal Henri Alfiandi and all ranks of the Basarnas in the head and regional offices,

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

First of all, let me wish you a happy 51st anniversary to the Basarnas and let me thank you for your dedication in every search and rescue (SAR) operation.

We certainly hope that no more disasters befell the community, be it natural disaster, other disasters, or big incidents. However, based on the data that I have, the disaster risks worldwide tend to be higher. The frequency has increased fivefold for the past 50 years. Fivefold, be careful. Disaster frequency in Indonesia also rose drastically by 81 percent from 1,945 in 2010 to 3,542 in 2022. Once again, it increased by 81 percent within 12 years.

We all hope that there will be no disasters, no big incidents anymore. However, we indeed had incidents, such as the Air Asia plane crash in Belitung waters in 2014, Sriwijaya SJ-182 plane crash in Thousand Islands in 2021, and Lion Air JT-610 plane crash in Karawang waters in 2018, and also Sinar Bangun motorboat crash in Lake Toba in 2018. I had been monitoring all of them and inspected firsthand some of them, and I must say that Basarnas’ response is really fast.

The victims and families of the victims heavily rely on the SAR team. The evacuation speed that determines the number of lives saved also depends on the SAR team. Therefore, in my point of view, the technology utilization to speed up search and rescue is vital. Although Mr. Henri explained about some equipment that we already have, I think Basarnas must have a lot more, such as rescue drones. Although I saw drones, we still don’t have drones for rescuing people, do we? Not yet.

Furthermore, for search and rescue effectiveness, several countries such as the United States and Japan, have been using snake robots. It was also shown that for search and rescue effectiveness, they can reach a depth of more than 1,000 meters, more than 1 km. There are diver robots, so people do not have to dive. Robots are the ones that will dive. Basarnas must immediately have these tools.

I do not know whether or not we have the budget for it. If there is no budget, do propose for it immediately. Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Cultural Affairs, please take note. Cabinet Secretary, please support Basarnas to have the equipment that I have mentioned, including jet suits that can be used for search at a high altitude up to 3,600 meters. I suppose this is like Iron Man.

Once again, current technology makes everything possible. Thus, in order to protect the personnel of SAR teams, the personnel of Basarnas, we can utilize it.

Finally, based on my observation, community involvement is crucial in our country. It is crucial in search and rescue process. Therefore, educating community in areas prone to disasters, be it floods, earthquakes, or other disasters, is vital. Once again, educating the community is vital so that they have first-response knowledge and skills. It is essential to start to make interventions, to educate the community so that they understand what to do in the initial events.

That concludes my statement. And by saying bismillahirrahmanirrahim, I hereby inaugurate the 2023 National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) Working Meeting and Search and Rescue Potential Coordination Forum (FKP3) this morning.

I thank you.

Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.


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