SIX members of West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service's have flown out to earthquake-hit Nepal to help in an international rescue mission.

The six West Sussex firefighters, who have responsibility for the UK's logistics operation, are part of a UK team of 67 responders including search and rescue crews, four search dogs, a medical support team and hazardous materials specialists.

A magnitude 7.8 earthquake hit the country on Saturday morning with the death toll now rising to 3,218 with at least 6,538 people injured.

The UK’s International Search and Rescue response teamflew from Stansted Airport at 9.15pm last night and are scheduled to land in Nepal’s capital Kathmandu later today.

The team has taken more than 11 tons of equipment with them, including search cameras, listening devices, breaking and breaching tools and jacking and lifting gear, all designed to locate and safely rescue trapped casualties.

The Technical Rescue Unit, which is based in Horley but whose members live across the county, is equipped to respond to disasters at home and abroad and has previously been deployed to earthquakes in Indonesia, Haiti, Japan and New Zealand.

The West Sussex firefighters on this deployment are Adrian Kirkpatrick from Crawley Down, Matt Simmons from Wittering, Owen Marfany from Horsham, Antony Walker and Neil Graham from Shoreham and Joe Sacco from Worthing.