The Soccorso Alpino e Speleologico has always been available to the institutions, by supporting the other authorities, law enforcement and armed forces, in order to help the population in difficulty with its specific operational characteristics and commitment.
Before acquiring the official term of Protezione Civile (‘Civil Protection’), the mutual help in case of difficulty was defined as “mutual rescue”, a sort solidarity among isolated communities while dealing with sudden and large emergencies.
The Protezione Civile is a national service established by law n.225 of 1992, in which the Corpo Nazionale Soccorso Alpino e Speleologico is recognized as its operating structure, is an integral part of it and is equated with the State Administrations.
Subsequently, law n. 74 of 21st March 2001 established that the CNSAS, as the national operating structure of the Protezione Civile national service (see law of 24th February 1992, n. 225), contributes to the rescue in case of calamities in cooperation with the Protezione Civile structures within the scope of its technical and institutional skills.
The events requiring the collaboration of the CNSAS within the scope of Protezione Civile are numerous, since the early 60s up to the new millennium.
Among the oldest there’s the Vajont disaster, in 1963, which was perhaps the first case of national mobilization for a tragedy of immense proportions.
Among the most recent episodes there are the earthquake in L’Aquila in 2009, the shipwreck of the Costa Concordia cruise ship in 2012, the snow emergency in the regions of central and southern Italy during 2012 winter, the tragedy of Refrontolo in 2014.
All of these scenarios, even if very different among each other, have found high-level technical and operational answers in the professionalism and preparation of the CNSAS staff.