Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) Organization

The Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) is made up of Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members and civilian employees of Global Affairs Canada (GAC). The team has experts and specialists from across Canada. The DART is not a formed unit in a single place. However, members are identified, trained and ready to go on missions on very short notice.

DART equipment, stores, and supplies are maintained so they are always ready to use. They are stored at Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Trenton, Ontario.

DART composition

The DART has the following main elements:

  • DART Headquarters: DART HQ is the link between the Government of Canada and the government of the nation in crisis. It is also the link to partners such as the United Nations (UN) and humanitarian aid groups that are not part of government. DART HQ has a commanding officer. The HQ directs all the work of the DART in the theatre of operations. DART HQ is drawn mostly from two units. These are the 1st Canadian Division Headquarters and the Canadian Forces Joint Signal Regiment in Kingston, Ontario.
  • DART Company (Coy): DART Company is the main body of the DART. It includes an Engineer Troop, a Medical Platoon, a Logistics Platoon and a Defence & Security Platoon. The DART Coy also has a headquarters to manage those sub units.
  • Engineer Troop: The Engineer Troop includes both field engineers (with sections for water supply, heavy equipment and field engineering) and construction engineers. The DART can purify up to 50,000 litres of safe drinking water per day to help people in need. It uses a Reverse Osmosis Water Purification Unit (ROWPU). After setting up the DART camp, engineers focus on tasks to assist people in the area.
  • Medical Platoon: The health care centre can serve up to 250 to 300 outpatients and 10 inpatients per day. This depends on the patients’ needs. The Medical Platoon operates a medical aid station. It offers laboratory, pharmacy, rehydration, preventive medicine and limited obstetrics services. It does not provide surgical or trauma care services.
  • Logistics Platoon: The Logistics Platoon provides the DART with most of the support and services it needs to operate. These include providing supplies, equipment, transport, and repairs for the vehicles.
  • Defence and Security Platoon: Defence and Security Platoon provides security and general labour for the DART.
  • Civilian Advisors: GAC civilian advisors are on the team to counsel on political and humanitarian issues. They also are the link between the military and the civilian people in the area.
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