Team Rubicon Assessing Needs in Morocco Following 6.8 Magnitude Earthquake

Julie H. Case

Humanitarian aid volunteers readying for aid response and possible deployment of EMT Type–1 Mobile Team.

When a 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck Morocco—its epicenter just roughly 44 miles south of Marrakech in Al Haouz province, high in the Atlas Mountains—on Friday, September 8, it became among the deadliest in the past 25 years. By Monday, September 11, Morocco’s interior ministry said that more than 2,680 people were confirmed dead, and at least 2,501 people were injured.

In response, humanitarian aid nonprofit Team Rubicon immediately deployed a needs assessment team to Morocco. Currently, the three-person team—which comprises two team leads with ties to the country and one doctor—is coordinating with local and global agencies, including the Morocco Ministry of Health, the World Health Organization, local medical personnel, and community leaders, and evaluating the best way Team Rubicon could assist the community.

Should Team Rubicon International receive an official request for assistance from Morocco’s Ministry of Health and the Ministry of International Affairs, it will deploy its EMT Type–1 Mobile Teams to Morocco. 

Volunteers on Team Rubicon’s EMT Type–1 Mobile Team deploy for humanitarian emergencies with temporary shelters, a robust medication cache, and technological support. Each EMT Type–1 Mobile Team is composed of two separate mobile units that can support outpatient clinics, each with the ability to evaluate and care for 50 patients in a 12-hour period for a minimum of 14 days. If deployed to Morocco, Team Rubicon’s mobile clinics will provide medical triage and clinic areas and be connected to the national and international broader response system. Given its expertise in reaching remote and often inaccessible disaster zones, the teams will seek to push the mobile units’ capability into the most difficult-to-access post-disaster communities. 

Should Team Rubicon International respond to the earthquake in Morocco, it will be far from the organization’s first international humanitarian operation: The nonprofit was founded in response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake and has completed humanitarian aid operations in more than 30 countries to date, including three in Ukraine in 2022

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