Earthquake and Tsunami-ravaged Japan is the last place many people want to be right now.

But that’s not the case for the Vancouver Urban Search And Rescue (USAR) team, who are anxiously waiting on the sidelines as people under rubble are waiting to be rescued in the aftermath of Thursday’s catastrophic natural disaster.

“Our team is ready and prepared,” said Vancouver fire department spokesperson Capt. Gabe Roder. “We know we could be making a difference right now but it’s completely out of our hands.”

In order for the 63-member unit to be deployed to Japan, the country would first have to request aid from the Canadian government.

Provided the province and city agree, Vancouver USAR would be the first Canadian rescue team called into action.

The group specializes in heavy urban search and rescue, and would bring equipment with them that could provide clean water and medical care to locals.

The squad was previously deployed to the United States in 2005 to find survivors after Hurricane Katrina.

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