Rats look for people – level 2

14-03-2024 15:00

Trainers from Belgian company APOPO are training rats to search for people in disaster zones.

Rats are very curious and they like to explore, so people train them just like dogs. They are very small, so they can easily move through debris. Also, they have very good smell to find things.

The animals wear a small backpack with special technology. A video camera and a device helps rescuers communicate with survivors.

Currently people train the rats in a simulated disaster zone. When the rat finds the person in an empty room, it pulls a switch on their vest. This sends a signal to rescuers that someone is in the debris. Then, the rat returns to the rescuers, and they reward the animal.

Difficult words: disaster zone (an area where a disaster happens, for example, after an earthquake or flood), debris (broken pieces of buildings and other things), survivor (a person who lives after something very bad happens), simulated (something that looks real but it is not real).

You can watch the original video in the Level 3 section.

What inspired the development of using rats as a search and rescue animal?


News in Levels is designed to teach you 3000 words in English. Please follow the instructions

How to improve your English with News in Levels: 


  1. Do the test at Test Languages.
  2. Go to your level. Go to Level 1 if you know 1-1000 words. Go to Level 2 if you know 1000-2000 words. Go to Level 3 if you know 2000-3000 words.


  1. Read two news articles every day.
  2. Read the news articles from the day before and check if you remember all new words.


  1. Listen to the news from today and read the text at the same time.
  2. Listen to the news from today without reading the text.


  1. Answer the question under today’s news and write the answer in the comments.


  1. Choose one person from the Skype section.
  2. Talk with this person. You can answer questions from Speak in Levels.


Stock images by Depositphotos