On Saturday, June 14, the 11 students of the county’s Search and Rescue (SAR) Academy completed their final field testing and certification, culminating classroom and field work that started in March and entailed more than 108 hours of instruction.
During these last four hours in the Happy Valley Wildlife Management Area, all 11 students were individually evaluated for their skills in map and compass, land navigation, global positioning systems, survival skills, and radio communication as they covered a course over three miles in length.
“The 2014 Oswego County SAR Academy was the second for the team and enables the group to shorten the time it takes to provide foundation training while ensuring that all students get the knowledge and ‘hands-on’ experience to safely and effectively operate as ground search resources,” said Roger Fox, SAR Team Director.
Conducted primarily at the County’s Emergency Response Training Center, classes were provided to the students by instructors from the County SAR team, the state Forest Rangers, State Police, Oswego County fire instructors, and other local SAR teams.
Given the success of this year’s SAR Academy, plans are already underway for a 2015 Academy. As these plans are finalized, interested individuals will find additional information available in the late fall.
The Oswego County Search and Rescue Team is an integral part of the county’s response to incidents that involve lost and or missing persons. It works closely with both state and local agencies including the Oswego County Sheriff’s Office, the state Forest Rangers and the State Police.
Last year the team responded to more than 40 incidents in six counties.
For information, contact Roger Fox at 625-7266.