Mission Statement

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					The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office

Search and Rescue Field Training Manual
September 2004

Mission Statement
We, the members of the El Dorado County Sheriff‘s Search and Rescue, in our mission to save lives and reduce human suffering, will give the public the most effective personnel and resource response to search, rescue, and disaster emergencies.

The purpose of this manual is to give members a complete reference and policy manual so they fully understand the expectations, standards, and policies of the Sheriff's Search and Rescue. It also lists the training standards and gives members practical information and tips about preparation, equipment, and the searches themselves.

Topic Page
Mission Statement...................................................................................................... I Introduction ................................................................................................................ I Contents ..................................................................................................................... I New Member Orientation ..........................................................................................1 The Search..................................................................................................................5 Uniforms and Equipment ........................................................................................ 17 Field Training.......................................................................................................... 20 Appendices .............................................................................................................. 22
APPENDIX A: Training Courses and Standards ...................................................................... 22 APPENDIX B: Individual Unit Descriptions, Equipment Requirements, and Specialized Training Requirements .............................................................................................................. 25 APPENDIX C: Optional Equipment ......................................................................................... 32 APPENDIX D: Suppliers of Equipment.................................................................................... 35 APPENDIX E: SAR Terms and Acronyms ............................................................................... 36 APPENDIX F: Telephone Numbers and Radio Frequencies .................................................... 37 APPENDIX G: Training Completion Form .............................................................................. 38

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New Member Orientation
History of Search and Rescue
History of Search and Rescue SAR and Sheriff‘s Office Structure The Incident Command System (ICS) ―Good Samaritan‖ Laws General Information
The El Dorado County Sheriff‘s Department, California‘s oldest, was created in 1850 to bring law and order to the mining camps at the height of the California Gold Rush. Starting with a sheriff and three deputies, the department has grown to over three hundred uniformed peace officers and support personnel. Its mission has evolved and broadened over the years to include far more than traditional law enforcement functions and the El Dorado County Sheriff‘s Department is now one of the most versatile law enforcement agencies in California.

The first organized search and rescue operation in this area was the Donner Rescue in 1847. Several dozen of the few hundred residents of this area raced desperately to reach the stranded Donner Party caught by winter on near the summit of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Short years later, the rescue exploits of Snowshoe Thompson in El Dorado County became national legend. In the 150 years since the Donner rescue, uniformed and volunteer search and rescue teams in El Dorado County have unhesitatingly risked their lives and safety in more than a thousand rescue missions, resulting in the saving of hundreds of lives and the alleviation of immeasurable human physical and emotional suffering. Search and Rescue operations in California are under the jurisdiction of the different counties sheriff‘s offices. Even on land owned or operated by other government jurisdictions, the Sheriff is responsible for all search and rescue operations. In 1984 the Sheriff‘s Department created a organization comprised of civilian volunteers under the leadership of Sheriff‘s Department personnel. The Sheriff‘s Search and Rescue is partially funded by the department budget provided by the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors, and donations from local groups to the El Dorado Search and Rescue Council (ESARC). The Sheriff‘s Search and Rescue Team has roughly two hundred civilian volunteers who specialize in ground searches, search management, cliff rescue, whitewater rescue, four-wheel drive missions, horseback searches, and air searches. Many search and rescue personnel also maintain emergency medicine qualifications such as paramedic, emergency medical technician, and first responder. All volunteers must meet rigorous standards and undergo constant training and re-certification.

The Incident Command System (ICS)
The Incident Command System (ICS) was developed as part of the FIRESCOPE program in the 1970‘s by an interagency working group representing Federal, state, and local fire services in California. After field tests, ICS was adopted by the fire services in California as the standard all-hazard response system. The ICS has five primary functions applicable to any emergency: command, operations, planning/intelligence, logistics, and finance/administration. As a result of the 1991 Oakland Hills fire, Senate Bill 1841 of January 1, 1993 (Section 8607 of the Government Code) improved the coordination of state and local emergency response in California. It directed the Governor‘s Office of Emergency Services (OES), in coordination with other state agencies and interested local emergency

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management agencies, to establish by regulation the Standardized Emergency Management System (SEMS). The SEMS regulation took effect in September 1994 and require the use of the ICS system at the field response level. The Field Response Level is the level where emergency response personnel and resources carry out tactical decisions and activities under the command of an appropriate authority in direct response to an incident or threat. During a search, the deputy in charge, usually a search and rescue coordinator will act as the Incident Commander.

The Good Samaritan Laws
Several California laws protect Search and Rescue volunteers when performing duties for the Sheriff's Department:

The Good Samaritan Act (California H&S 1799.102)
No person who in good faith, and not for compensation, renders emergency care at the scene of an emergency shall be liable for any civil damages resulting from any act or omission.

The California Government Code 50086
No person who is summoned by a county sheriff, city police department, fire department, park ranger, or other local agency to voluntarily assist in a search and rescue operation who possesses first aid training equivalent to the Red Cross and advanced first aid and emergency care training standards, and who in good faith renders emergency services to a victim prior to or during the evacuation or extrication of the victim, shall be liable for any civil damages as a result of any acts of omissions by such person in rendering such emergency services.

General Information for SAR Members
Professional and Personal Conduct
When on duty or when identifiable as members of Search and Rescue, volunteers shall conduct themselves professionally. They must obey all laws and avoid any conduct that brings discredit to the Department. All members are bound by the Sheriff's Department's standards of conduct and must read and abide by those standards.

Public Appearances and Statements
Volunteers shall not publicly criticize the Sheriff‘s Department or Search and Rescue. Further, members may not speak before public gatherings or publish material concerning the Department in any written form without prior approval of the Department. Volunteers shall respect the confidentiality of all information they receive concerning the internal matters of the Sheriff‘s Department.

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New Member Orientation
Volunteers may not use their official position, their identification card, or uniform for any personal or financial gain, for privileges not otherwise available, for avoiding the consequences of illegal acts. Volunteers may not allow themselves to be used for any commercial endorsement without the prior approval of the Department.

Alcohol and Controlled Substances
The El Dorado County Sheriff‘s Office will enforce the zero tolerance policy towards drugs and alcohol at all times. Members may not drink alcohol while on duty or appear for duty under even the slightest influence of alcohol. This prohibition applies to all training, meetings, or while conducting any administrative functions. Further, members may not drink alcohol in any Department facility or vehicle. Use of illegal drugs and controlled substances is forbidden. Members taking prescribed medication on duty must notify the Sheriff‘s coordinator in charge.

Obeying Orders
Members must obey all orders from those authorized to give them—incident commanders, team leaders, or other uniformed personnel with situational authority. Members may refuse to obey an order only when obeying the order places the member or others in excessive hazard of life or limb or obeying the order would cause the member to commit a criminal act. Members may not refuse to obey an order because they question its wisdom, reasonableness, or for any other reason not mentioned in the paragraph above. When given what they feel are conflicting orders, members should inform the person giving the order and they may try to resolve the situation, but must still obey.

Professional Standards
Members must meet the highest standards of professionalism and are responsible for developing their skills. Search and Rescue work involves the use of highly specialized skills. Although the Department does not require prior experience or training, it does expect its volunteers to improve themselves at every opportunity. Members must not only attend required training, but should actively seek out developmental and educational activities on their own. The Department encourages members to educate themselves by joining professional societies, reading literature on Search and Rescue, identifying new skills they can use, and doing everything possible to improve their professional knowledge and abilities.

Friends and Animals
Personal pets not certified for Search and Rescue work, other unauthorized animals, and friends are not authorized on searches, training classes or any other department-related activity.. Members who feel that they have grounds for an exception must contact their coordinator.

Members must have telephones in their residences, or have an alternate way of being reached, e.g. a pager. Members must keep the department apprised of any changes in their phone numbers, pager numbers, and

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addresses. Members are encouraged to also become adept with other electronic communication forms, such as email, personal ham radios, and the Department will offer training on additional communications skills.

Carrying Firearms
The Sheriff‘s Office encourages volunteers not to carry firearms. The carrying of concealed firearms is authorized only when the member has secured the necessary permit and the weapon will be concealed at all times.

Operating Vehicles and Using Equipment
Members must operate vehicles and aircraft prudently and carefully. Members must also maintain the necessary certification to operate vehicles and aircraft and must report any loss of certification immediately. Members are required to maintain loss coverage liability insurance on vehicles and aircraft used for Search and Rescue. When operating Department vehicles, volunteers may only use the emergency signals or sirens when authorized by the Incident Commander (I/C). Members shall properly safeguard and carefully use all Department equipment and other property.

Courtesy, Sexual Harassment, and Discrimination
Volunteers shall treat members of the public, other volunteers, and Department personnel with respect and courtesy. They shall be tactful, patient, and calm while performing their duties and control their tempers and language. Members are expressly forbidden from discriminating against or harassing anybody based upon sex, religion, race, color, national origin, age, and physical or mental handicap.

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The Search
How a Callout Works Callout Procedures Driving to and From the Search Base Camp and Command Post Searching Time References
The search starts when somebody calls 911 to report a missing or overdue person. There is no minimum waiting period, and the Department dispatches a deputy immediately to evaluate the situation. If the deputy determines that the situation is indeed a Search and Rescue matter, a SAR coordinator immediately takes charge of the incident. The coordinator decides what teams are needed, determines how many people are necessary, and starts the call-out process that reaches the people needed on the search. Remember that the Department does not notify all members for all searches. In some cases, the mission requires only specialty teams like Cliff Rescue or Swiftwater. In other cases, only limited numbers of searchers are necessary.

SAR members will be paged and will see the number 621-6555*911 with the first seven digits indicating the hotline number and 911 indicating a search and rescue incident. A pager message that shows 000000 means that the search has finished or been cancelled and no further response is necessary. A pager message that shows a phone number (eg. 621-6555 or 621-6569) with a ―411‖, means to call the number for information. Members who are delayed in responding should call the hotline before they leave home in case the search has been called off or the details about where to report have changed. Members are encouraged to monitor pertinent radio frequencies with a scanner while responding to a search. A search is an emergency so members must be prepared to respond at any hour. Therefore, they should turn off their answering machines when at home and leave their pagers where they can hear them. The Department expects members to respond to at least fifty percent of the searches they are called out on.

Driving to and from the Search
Our chances of having a traffic accident rise dramatically on the way to a search. We are in a hurry, on roads we may not know well, and distracted by the excitement of a search. If it's in the middle of the night, we may not even be completely awake yet. Commando driving is dangerous and dumb. The lost person has been out there for hours or days and ten to fifteen more minutes will not make any difference. If you want to get there more quickly, save time by having your gear ready and developing efficient methods to get yourself ready and out of the house faster. Once you're on the road, stay within the speed limit and obey all the traffic laws and conventions. Remember too that wearing a SAR uniform and going to or from a callout does not make us immune from traffic tickets. SAR personnel may occasionally have to drive Sheriff's Department vehicles. This is when you should be even more courteous and cautious--if you offend people, they know where and whom to call. Stay with the flow of

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traffic, don't speed, and don't tailgate. This is especially important because when you drive a department vehicle, it is common for motorists to slow suddenly when they see a law enforcement vehicle. Never use any of the emergency signaling devices--siren or flashing lights--to clear traffic, unless authorized by the Incident Commander (I/C). When leaving for an incident in a department vehicle, radio Central Dispatch and tell them what unit and where you are going. You: Central: You: Central: Central, SAR 335 SAR 335 10-8, unit 023 (Rescue 3), enroute to Ice House Resort 10-4

(10-8 is one of the radio codes used to keep transmission length to a minimum. In this case it means "on duty" or "ready for assignment")

Finding Base Camp or the Command Post
If you're new to the area, the Sheriff's Department strongly encourages you to familiarize yourselves with El Dorado County. Many of the call-out people will assume a basic familiarity with the county and will give instructions for finding the command post like: "Ten miles up Ice House Road." Therefore, you'll need some good maps. Here are some tips:  Start with a good road map of the county. The Chamber of Commerce has some in their office on Main Street in Placerville. The best and most complete is the Compass Map Book available at Placerville News on Main Street and other local stores. Get a map of the El Dorado National Forest. Go to the visitors' center in Camino, the headquarters on Forni Road across the freeway from the Sheriff's Department, or one of the ranger stations and you can pick up one of two versions. The free one shows off-road travel, but is hard to read. The $2.50 one shows the dirt road, campgrounds, ranger stations, and fire lookouts. Tell them it is for search and rescue and they will assist you with getting the correct maps. Avoid the USGS or Forest Service topographical maps. They're great once you're out in the field, but they're inferior as road maps. They don't show road names and they're outdated and do not show roads and landmarks built since the 1970's. Familiarize yourself with and be able to find the following roads common to most callouts: Iron Mountain Road or Mormon Emigrant Trail - Southern part of the county Highway 88 - Through Caples Lake, Silver Lake, Martin Meadows, and Kirkwood Grizzly Flat Road - Grizzly Flat, Somerset, Capp's Crossing, Southern part of the county Mosquito Road - Mosquito, Swansborough, Finnon Lake Highway 193 - Chili Bar, Kelsey, Georgetown, Wentworth Springs Road Wentworth Springs Road - Georgetown, Stumpy Meadows, Northwest county Wright's Lake Road - Wright's Lake, Desolation Wilderness, Pyramid Peak Highway 49 - Coloma, Cool, and south through Amador County




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Ice House Road - Ice House, Big Hill, Union Valley, Loon Lake Silver Fork Road - China Flat and Silver Fork campgrounds, Fitch-Rantz bridge Sly Park Road - Jenkinson Lake, Sly Park, access to Iron Mountain Road

Accommodations in Base Camp
Searchers must be self-sufficient for forty-eight hours (48 hrs). While the Sheriff's Department makes every effort to provide facilities, it is not always possible or they may not come quickly. Therefore, searchers should come prepared to camp out for two days. When making sleeping arrangements, searchers should sleep and eat in one common camping area. Do not erect a tent or sleep on the ground away from others, as it is common for vehicles to come and go at all times of the day and night through the woods and off the paved roads near command posts and base camps, and it is possible to be run over if you're away in the woods on your own. If you plan to sleep in your vehicle, choose a place away from generators, roads, and lights. Eating accommodations vary. For short searches, we depend upon what we bring ourselves. For longer searches, the Sheriff's Department may send in food. However, you should always carry enough food in your pack to carry you through two days. Veteran searchers usually carry in their vehicles a large container with cans of food and other items that might be necessary for several days in the field. Showers in base camp are rare luxuries. Nonetheless, you should be prepared with soap, shampoo, and towels. Portable toilets are usually available, but you should still be prepared with toilet paper and a trowel.

Out-of-County Searches
Other jurisdictions often call on us for help. The call-out will usually tell you how long we'll expect to be gone, and if you cannot stay the entire time, you should make your own arrangements for traveling home. We usually travel in groups in Department vehicles so careful packing is important since space for gear may be limited. You'll need to bring enough gear for camping out, as inside accommodations are rare. Further, you'll need to be ready for all types of weather and terrain. You could end up going into the desert or up to 11,000 feet, so make sure that you have all the required equipment. Be prepared to be flexible with sleeping and eating arrangements, so make your packing plans accordingly.

Professional Conduct During a Search
Obey all orders from those authorized to give them (uniformed personnel and team leaders) - When on a mission, you are part of a hierarchical structure and decision-making process that can only function smoothly when members follow instructions promptly and exactly. You may refuse to obey an order only when you can demonstrate that obeying the order places you in unreasonable danger. If you simply disagree with the order, you may raise your objections at the time; you may try to persuade, you may suggest alternatives. However, you must still do as you are told. Then, if you feel the matter was improperly handled, bring it up later through the chain of command after the search. Refusal to obey orders and defiance of authority are serious enough to usually warrant dismissal. Obey first, grieve later. Safety first and safety always - Injuries to search personnel affect the mission. If you become hurt, resources must be diverted and thinned which may affect our ability to find the lost subject in time. Stay constantly vigilant

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for danger and take no unreasonable risks. Don‘t drive across slopes that you‘re not positive are within the safe range of your vehicle. Don‘t step anywhere you‘re not certain provides safe footing. Save your bravado for those rare situations when we must take a calculated risk of injury to save somebody‘s life. Watch what you say - This is always important but even more so around the command post and over the air. Always assume that friends and relatives of the subject are within earshot. Treat each radio transmission as though a third party were listening. Talk seriously and talk professionally. Searches are a life and death matter and you can cause serious grief and concern by joking, arguing, speculating about the survival of the subject, acting silly, or doing anything that might make us appear unconcerned, undedicated, or unprofessional.. Avoid especially the temptation to joke about the very young, the very old, or the disabled. Say nothing to the media or any outside party without authorization - Part of the incident command system is strict control of information given to the public and the media. Don‘t argue with the media and don‘t create an adversary situation; just tell them that you are not authorized to give information and direct them to the Public Information Officer (PIO) who has been appointed for that search. No search ends without every searcher accounted for - Never leave a search without formally signing out. We cannot close a search until every single SAR member has been accounted for and we have been formally released. If we cannot find a member and he or she has not signed out, we simply cannot assume that he or she went home and simply forgot to sign out. You may cause your colleagues considerable trouble by negligently leaving without following proper procedures. Take care of our equipment - Not only is it expensive to replace, but faulty equipment can kill—especially ropes and mechanical devices used in cliff and swiftwater work. Never step on a rope or piece of load-bearing webbing. Don‘t use or play with equipment you don‘t know. When you take or are issued a piece of equipment for a search, return it to the exact place it is stored immediately after the search is over. Cooperate, cooperate, and cooperate some more - We are called teams for a reason: Teamwork is crucial to the success of this organization. You will probably work with and for people whom you may dislike; you will probably develop unequal friendships and uneven loyalties. However, you must learn to cooperate equally and cheerfully with all members of all teams regardless of your personal attitudes. Always put professionalism and cooperation first.

Processing Property
Report all property that has been discovered, gathered, or received in connection with a search to the unit coordinator, liaison officer, or first available uniformed officer immediately for processing in accordance with department regulations.

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The Search

Search and Rescue operations can last several hours to several days in any type of terrain in any type of weather. Search and Rescue teams work through freezing temperatures and deep snow or tropical temperatures in swarms of mosquitoes and everything in between. They climb the highest peaks in the Sierras and they trudge through the red clay of the lower foothills. They travel by boat, raft, plane, ski, jeep, horse, and kayak, but mostly by foot. Although Search and Rescue teams work throughout the county, most missions take place in the eastern portion of the county north of Highway 50, usually within a five mile radius of the Desolation Wilderness part of the El Dorado National Forest at elevations between five thousand and eight thousand feet. The most common lost person is somebody, often a child, who has become separated from the rest of the party or family while hiking, camping, or hunting. When the reporting party calls the Sheriff‘s Department, a deputy sheriff will investigate and then decide whether to initiate a search. A decision-making process will choose the necessary resources and a callout procedure will summon the right people to the right place with the right equipment. It is not unusual, though, for a search to be called off within an hour and it is also not unusual for it to expand into a huge multi-county, multi-agency effort that draws upon every resource and every man and woman at the disposal of Search and Rescue. Remember that search and rescue is an emergency. Ask your FTO about the relationship of response time to the size of the search area. Additional resources within the ground team include swiftwater and cliff rescue. El Dorado County has some of the best whitewater rafting rivers in California. From spring through fall of every year fleets of rafts, kayaks, and inner tubes crash through rapids rated up to the top of the danger scale. They don‘t always make it. Body recoveries in the rivers are an unfortunately common mission. Similarly, the county has hills and mountains highly popular with hikers and rock climbers who also end up becoming the objects of highly technical and dangerous cliff rescues. The Sheriff also calls on Search and Rescue volunteers during weather disasters and other natural disasters to help the county‘s Office of Emergency Services (OES) do crucial administrative work in the office or by going out to the field to perform a variety of missions. Other volunteer based groups. Such as Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), Noah‘s Wish (Animal Rescue Group), and ARES (Ham Group), may also be called in to assist with the incident.

Search Basics
You‘ll receive extensive training about search techniques, but it‘s worth giving you a brief overview of how we conduct our searches and an introduction to some of the terminology and abbreviations. As we mentioned earlier, what starts the search is a decision-making process that follows the initial report of a lost person to our Sheriff‘s Office by a citizen, known in police terminology as the Reporting Party (RP). When the Sheriff needs search units, a call-out procedure notifies as many people as needed to report to a command post. The Search Management unit, comprised of deputies and volunteers, will have gathered as much evidence and information as possible about the lost subject while performing a hasty search, they will process that information through a complicated analytic model and mathematical paradigm (The Matson process) that predicts the likely behavior of that lost person. The most significant determinant is the last confirmed location of the subject, known as the Point Last Seen (PLS). It is crucial to search planning to fix this point as exactly as possible through detailed interviews of the people who last saw the subject. Historically, about seventy-five percent of all lost subjects are found within a radius of a

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quarter mile to two miles from the PLS. Therefore, ensuring the accuracy of this location may well be the difference between a successful and unsuccessful search. The Search Management team will plan and direct detailed routes for search parties and send them out in a carefully organized pattern, maintaining at the same time extensive documentation about each individual team mission. A search team normally consists of two to four people. A fully trained searcher is usually designated the team leader who then chooses a navigator and radio operator. As a trainee, your job will be to watch, listen, and learn. Never be afraid to ask questions. Assist as directed by your FTO. While waiting for an assignment, team members should stay together. Take this time to do the following:     Write down what you've been given so far about the name and description of the subject and all other relevant details about the incident. Check issued or personal GPS units using the coordinates of the Command Post (CP). Pick up your radios from the communications coordinator and check to make sure they're working. Assemble the right personal and SAR equipment. Veteran searchers bring more equipment than they need to be prepared for different conditions. Take the time now to put together what you'll need on this particular search. For example, if the search area will be a considerable distance from the command post, put extra food in your pack in anticipation of perhaps spending the night. If the weather report suggests inclement conditions, get your rain gear in an accessible place. Always bring extra batteries for your equipment.

Conversely, if the search will be in an urban area or will be a body recovery involving no lengthy hiking or searching, consider lightening your equipment and carrying only water, gloves, your first aid kit, and your knife. The Search Management team will give the team leader the assignment as well as a written summary, a map of the area, and radio frequencies and call signs. If the assignment starts away from the command post, Search Management will also arrange transportation to the starting point, if you do not self-transport. The team leader will then brief the rest of the team and pass out any additional paperwork and maps. The team members will then put on their equipment and the team leader will inspect the equipment and clothing. When your team leaves, it must check out both in person and by radio so that Search Management knows exactly when the teams have left and the communications team knows that the radios are working and are correctly tuned. Similarly, when teams return, they check in by radio and go to the debriefing desk. Two fundamental principles guide the conduct of a search. First, regardless of the type of terrain, search parties look for clues, not people. If a search party spots the subject, all the better. However, searchers are concentrating primarily on traces, signs, and other physical evidence that would point toward the location of the subject. Clues range from the subtle, like a small area of muddy water in the still portion of a creek where the bottom was recently disturbed, to the obvious, such as pieces of discarded equipment. Another valuable source of information is interviewing citizens whom search parties encounter. The second guiding principle is safety of the searchers. Safety is a vital issue not merely for the obvious reason that we don‘t wish to see our own people injured but for the less obvious reason that accidents to searchers jeopardize the mission. If a searcher becomes injured, it stops the individual mission from proceeding and might even require that vital assets needed to search for the subject be shifted to care for and transport the searcher. Therefore, searchers must take extreme care in areas of potential hazard. Common safety hazards are steep slopes,

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slippery rocks in streams, the hundreds of deep holes and mineshafts left by the forty-niners, crevasses hidden by level snow, snakes, predatory animals, and weather casualties (heatstroke, frostbite, hypothermia). Although the dangers on a search are not great to people with moderate outdoors experience, they must nonetheless never be trivialized. Search tactics fall into three broad categories. The first is a hasty search in which usually the first five to ten searchers arriving at the scene are put together into search teams sent out immediately to conduct a quick inspection of high probability areas—paths, roads, high danger areas where an injured subject may lay, drainages, and other likely areas. Part of the rationale for the hasty search is to isolate areas that do not contain the subject. Hasty teams are also used for containment of the subject. Having eliminated those areas, search management personnel will then organize parties for a more detailed sweep of the ground, covering remaining likely areas. This second type of search uses teams of two to four searchers (we never go out on searches alone) under a team leader, the most experienced searcher. These teams will generally walk in a widely spaced pattern with one member acting as navigator and others at distances several yards to several hundred yards apart, depending upon terrain and weather. Although the teams have specific areas they must cover, the search area may be large. The individual team assignments generally take them three to ten miles over the course of several hours. The team then reports back to the command post where members are carefully debriefed by Search Management personnel. Searchers report back on the type of terrain they crossed, signs they might have spotted, and, most important, an estimate of the likelihood that they would have found the subject had he or she been inside that search area, known as Probability of Detection (POD) and expressed as a percentage. The third type of search is an intense grid search within a closed area by one huge search team, usually up to thirty or forty people. Typically, searchers will walk close together (five to ten yards apart) over the full length and breadth of their assigned area with their eyes focused on the ground around them. The assigned area will usually have been carefully marked off with string, tape, or other marking material. Searches last from several hours to several days and the longer ones can cost significant sums of money. In many cases, counties in California (and adjoining jurisdictions in Nevada) will ask for help from search and rescue units in other counties. El Dorado County has received help from and given help to other jurisdictions on many occasions over the years. Thankfully, though, most subjects are found and any member who has seen the faces of the family members re-united with lost subjects will experience an emotion not easily described in words.

Working with a Dog Team
Trained search dogs are valuable resources. Their ability to distinguish and follow scents is extraordinary. However, they need human help to find the right starting points so they do not wear themselves out. The job of searchers is to anticipate the best places for the dogs to work--where the subject is most likely to go. The dog handler often leads the team, even though he or she may be from another jurisdiction, he or she knows the dog's skill and ability. If you know that a dog will be assigned to a search area, do your best to stay out of the area, so that you do not contaminate clues. Let the handler do his or her work and do not distract the dog. The handler knows best how much affection and attention the dog needs to work well. Do not give the dog food, pats, or attention unless the handler gives you permission.

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Hazards in the Field
As we mentioned in passing earlier, the wilderness is dangerous. The reason that we are probably out there is because somebody ignored hazards or did not take reasonable precaution. Here are the most common:

The helicopter is one of the most valuable and commonly used resources in Search and Rescue. The agencies that we rely on the most are the California Highway Patrol, the Navy's Search and Rescue helicopters from the Naval Air Station in Fallon, and several helicopter ambulance services. Aircraft safety is a required class. However, helicopters can also be dangerous to people on the ground. Take the following precautions:      First, complete the aircraft safety training course we offer through the SAR Basic Academy. Follow all directions of the helicopter crew. Secure all loose items-hats, jackets, gear, etc. Wait for the pilot's signal before approaching the aircraft Approach from the front or the side only and always stay within the pilot's view. A serious accident resulted with a film crew member in El Dorado County approaching a helicopter from the rear and being dreadfully injured when the rear rotor blade struck his head. Be extremely cautious when the helicopter has landed on an uneven surface and the blades are still turning. Although the blades are normally well above head level, standing on the upward slope will raise your head into the blade area. A CHP officer was killed when approaching a helicopter from the upward slope. Never raise your arms above shoulder level. Again, the blades are normally above head level, but raising your arms over your head can put them in their path. Do not go to the rear of the passenger doors unless ordered. Expect dust and consider wearing goggles or a bandana.


  

El Dorado County's most famous natural resource has had people digging in its hills and mountains since 1848. And they did not always tidy up after themselves. The Forty-Niners and their ancestors have left thousands of mineshafts throughout the county, almost none of which are marked on any map. Some are hundreds of feet deep with water and gas on the bottom and some are a mere foot or two wide and a foot or two deep, the perfect size for breaking the leg of somebody who inadvertently steps in it. We avoid entering mineshafts at all costs. Mine rescue is a tremendously complex and dangerous specialty. Because of the cost and specialization required, we do not maintain a mine rescue unit and must call on other agencies for resources. If we suspect a victim may have fallen in one, the Sheriff's Department will call sister agencies for help.

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Be extremely careful when walking, as a mineshaft may turn up anywhere and the opening may not be visible until you're in it. This is one of the many reasons we never send searchers out alone. Because of mines and other reasons, always maintain visual contact with everybody in your search team. Do not spread out too far and do not let a member out of your sight. If you do find a mineshaft, mark it with flagging tape so that others can spot it even at night. Then try to locate it on the map and mark it to pass on to others.

Marijuana Farms
The threat from marijuana growers is significant, as at least five percent of the marijuana farms are indeed boobytrapped and growers' shooting people on site is a possibility. Our encounters with marijuana farms are uncommon but precautions are still wise. The most common sign, beside the obvious plants with the five-pronged leaves, is irrigation. Farms are usually close to a water source, so black or camouflaged PVC pipes running along the ground can be a sign of a nearby marijuana farm. The other obvious sign is the ever-present camouflage. Growers must go to extra lengths to hide the crop and the farm from aerial surveillance, so everything around, even gardening implements, may be camouflaged. The two best protective measures are identification with SAR and immediate withdrawal. First, make sure that you are easily identifiable as a SAR volunteer. SAR members should avoid wearing clothing favored by military units and SWAT teams. Wear as much orange as possible and always make noise, calling out the subject's name and blowing whistles. Second, if you stumble across a farm, get out quickly without drawing attention to yourself. Meet with the other members of your team without announcing the reason over the radio. Note the location, leave the hazard area, and once a safe distance away, call for a Sheriff‘s Office coordinator.

Be extremely careful in October and November. We have many searches for lost hunters or others who have strayed into hunting territory. Two precautions are important:  Wear as much blaze orange as possible. A hat is not enough. These are cold weather searches and it is tempting to put on heavier darker clothing over the orange shirt. Do not. Either get a blaze orange outer parka or poncho or get an orange vest large enough to wear over an outer coat. Outdoor suppliers usually have them in the hunting departments. Make noise. As with avoiding the danger of marijuana farms make plenty of human and artificial noise around hunters. Remember that the forest muffles sounds so make them loud and frequent.


Weather and Environment
Weather in the Sierras can take a person by surprise. The clear sunny summer morning can turn to torrential rain and thunderstorms in the afternoon.

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The greatest danger is cold. Even with short sleeve weather in Placerville and Sacramento, it can be cold and snowing in the mountains. Therefore, make sure you bring a variety of clothes with you in your car, so that if the weather at the search site is different, you can add or remove clothing. Keep these tips in mind:  Rain gear is a must. Carry it in your car so you'll always have it ready. As a minimum, make sure you have a poncho with your pack. Ponchos double as survival gear, but since they do leave your legs exposed, you might wish to bring rain pants or long gaiters to use with ponchos. Avoid cotton garments in foul weather. Cotton does not keep you warm when you get wet and takes forever to dry. Levis, for example, are not a good idea in bad weather because they are completely cotton and since they're so thick, they take even longer to dry and can cause severe heat loss to your body. The best fabric in cold weather is wool or artificial fibers like polypropylene. Wool still keeps you warm even when wet and the newer artificial fibers wick off perspiration to outer garments. If the legs and torso are warm, most heat loss occurs from the head and neck. Make sure you have a warm cap and a turtleneck or scarf in your gear. The best way to wear socks is to start with a thin pair of polyester socks and then put a pair of thick wool or artificial fiber socks over them. This wicks away the moisture and also helps prevent blisters because the two pairs rub against each other and absorb the friction.


  

Water is the most important item in your search gear. You can survive for considerable time without food, but not for long without water. Carry as much as you can. Although the minimum required amount is one quart, wise searchers carry two and in hot weather three or four. Take a large drink of water before you leave and after that, keep taking small sips at regular intervals, even if you do not feel thirsty. Avoid coffee and caffeinated colas, as they dehydrate you because the caffeine is a diuretic. Water purification tablets or filters are required equipment. Water from streams and lakes is likely to have vicious bacteria and giardia lamblia, whose cure is worse than the disease. Use stream water only when your canteen is dry. Another advantage to carrying two or more canteens is that when one empties, you can fill it and put tablets in it, and then use the other during the time it takes the tablets in the first canteen to do their work. Some searchers bring sweetened Kool-Aid packets, Gatorade powder, or other similar dry mixes to put in water that has been purified to mask any taste the tablets leave.

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The Search Animals
The dangers from animals are not great, but should not be minimized. In this area, the three animals worth worry about are mountain lions, bears, and rattlesnakes. Beware of rabies, ticks, fleas, and Lymes‘ disease.  Bears - Grizzlies, or brown bears, are extinct in this area (although they are present in the Northwest, Alaska, and Canada). The only bear in this area is the Black Bear, a generally benign creature who has, however, on occasion attacked humans. The general rule on dealing with the Brown Bear is that it will usually do the opposite of the way it is acting. If it is prancing, pawing, and acting aggressive, it will probably not attack. On the other hand, if it is acting shy and coy, you are likely in danger. Mountain Lions - Sightings of mountain lions are increasing in the Sierras and the foothills. Indeed, one of our most publicized but tragic searches ended when we found the victim deceased and soon realized that she had died from an attack by a lion. Lions usually avoid people, but more sightings are being reported.


Mountain lions are ambush predators--they sneak up from behind and attack the victim by the throat to crush the larynx. The simplest precaution is occasionally checking behind you when you're walking in the woods. If you encounter one, do not run. It may think you're food. Try to frighten it by trying to make yourself appear to be as big and as aggressive as possible. Stand as tall as you can and put your arms high over your head and make gestures as aggressive as you can under the circumstances without challenging the lion.

Bivouacs in the Field
Survival is too dramatic a word. When people talk of survival on a SAR mission, they're really talking about an unexpected overnight campout--not about living on plants and bugs. "Surviving,‖ means not so much keeping you alive as allowing you to go on searching the next morning. Nonetheless, the right equipment and skills are essential. Searchers are required to keep survival gear in their packs, attend a survival class, and complete an overnight exercise. Periodically check your pack between searches to make sure that you have your minimum complement of survival gear to keep you warm, dry, and fed: shelter items, food, fire starting material, and matches. Some searchers divide their survival gear into two parts and carry lesser amounts when within walking distance of base camp and larger amounts when a greater distance away.

Time Conversions
For time references, the Sheriff's Department uses a twenty-four hour clock without AM and PM references, sometimes called military time or railroad time, which is expressed as a four-digit number between 0001 (one minute past midnight) and 2400 (following midnight), e.g. 0630 hours, 1850 hours. If you haven't used it before, it takes some time getting used to but it's nonetheless simple. Time references under 1200 are AM and are the easiest because they are what they look like and converting them is easy: From military time to ordinary time, 0630 hours means 6:30 AM, 1000 hours means 10:00 AM and so on. Conversely, from ordinary to military time, 5:30 AM is 0530 hours and 11:21 AM is 1121 hours. Times over 1200 are PM. To convert military time to ordinary time, simply subtract twelve. Thus, 1700 is 5:00 PM, 2130 is 9:30 PM, and so on. To convert from ordinary time to military time, add twelve. Thus 6:00 PM in military time becomes 1800 hours, 10:15 PM becomes 2230 hours, and so on.

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Uniforms and Equipment
Dressing for a Search
Dressing for a Search Uniform and Patch Placement Preparation for a Call-Out Basic Search Pack Requirements
Packs: Searchers must carry every item on the required list on every search. Members, however, use a variety of methods of carrying equipment. Most use backpacks for their equipment, although many prefer military web gear for easier accessibility and weight distribution. Sheriff‘s deputies, team leaders, and Field Training Officers will conduct spot checks and inspection of equipment before searches to ensure members have all necessary equipment.

General Dress: Dressing for a search depends, of course, on the weather. However, much of the dress is constant. First, all members must wear the blaze orange uniform shirt with the appropriate markings and insignia (see enclosure). Hats, coats, jackets, windbreakers, gaiters are all optional. However, searchers should, to the maximum extent feasible, wear outer clothing that is blaze orange. Visibility is crucial; for the benefit of victims, supporting aircraft, other searchers, you must be visible from considerable distances. Wearing any camouflage or other dark military clothing (shirts, caps, etc.) is not authorized. It makes it harder for people (don‘t forget hunters and target shooters) to see you. Remember, in many backwoods areas, not all citizens are enthusiastic about the presence of law enforcement personnel and government employees. Therefore, it is important that you go to great lengths to be recognized as a Search and Rescue volunteer and not be mis-identified as a potential threat. Pants: Because of brambles, nasty brush, and poison oak, you must wear long pants at all times of year regardless of the heat. Searchers have a variety of preferences. Some wear Levis because of their strength. Others dislike them because of their weight and composition. The all-cotton material causes them to soak up and retain large amounts of water, a serious discomfort during and after wading across rivers and streams. For this reason, you should never wear Levis in winter or snow searches. Many members prefer lighter materials with blends of fabrics—usually polyester and cotton. Highly popular are the military field pants (called BDU‘s) made from a lightweight polyester/cotton blend that dries quickly even after being soaked. Their large cargo pockets on the legs are also ideal for bags of trail mix, water bottles, and other bulky items. Again, if you buy BDU pants, avoid the camouflage or black colors. Hats: You don‘t have to wear one, but the hat is important because it protects you from the sun and is often the most visible clothing item. Wear whatever you wish, but the best bet is the blaze orange polyester baseball sold by our uniform coordinator. The Day-Glo color is highly visible and the lettering identifies you immediately as a search and rescue volunteer. Wide-brimmed hats are popular in heavy sun. Remember, though, to stay away from the olive drab, black, or camouflage patterns. Footwear: Take care in selecting footwear. Never wear tennis shoes, running shoes, or western boots. Wear only shoes designed for hiking, hiking boots, or any one of a variety of boots made for military or law enforcement fieldwork. Your main concerns are comfort, support, weight, and durability. You want footwear that is as light and comfortable as possible, yet strong enough stand up under rough use. High top or low top is a matter of personal preference. Many prefer low-cut hiking shoes because of the flexibility, but others prefer the high tops because of the ankle support. Sometimes, the low-cut shoes can become filled with dirt and rocks when sliding

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Uniforms and Equipment
down loose hilly terrain, although gaiters can help prevent that. Outdoor catalogues offer a good variety of boots shoes. Many outdoor stores in this area have a good variety. Food and Water: Water and food are crucial. After one hour of walking, you must replace water; after two hours, you need electrolytes; and after three hours, you need food. Therefore, in addition to the required minimum quart of water, a quart of any commercial sports drink, e.g. Gatorade, Allsport, is a judicious addition to your equipment. Carry also low-fat snacks like trail mix, fruit bars, or energy bars, e.g. Clif, Powerbar. The time to lose weight is before a search, not during one. You need the calories for not only physical stamina but to retain mental and sensory abilities as well. Snow Clothing: Two words: Cotton kills! The key to warmth and comfort in freezing and snowy conditions is multiple layers of clothing made from artificial fibers or silk. Where cotton absorbs moisture, the artificial fibers wick away moisture in varying degrees depending upon the composition. The rule for dressing in cold is that several thinner layers (which trap insulating pockets of air) are better than one big garment. If you‘re inexperienced in the outdoors during winter, don‘t feel too embarrassed to ask questions. Most new members, including uniformed personnel, have little or no experience in extreme winter conditions. The Nordic Ski Patrol, affiliated with Search and Rescue, has some excellent handouts about winter equipment and clothing that are available from the team coordinators.

Uniform and Patch Placement
The official uniform is a long sleeve Blaze Orange shirt (available from the uniform coordinator) with the following insignia:         El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office Patch (available from teams) on left shoulder centered a half-inch below the shoulder seam. Blue and Yellow El Dorado County Search and Rescue Patch - above left pocket a half inch above. Team rockers (swiftwater, cliff, management) - circling the Blue and Yellow Search and Rescue patch Name patch - centered a half inch above the right pocket Rectangular cloth medical patches (not exceeding three inches) one inch above the name patch on right side Other medical patches (First Responder) - centered directly on right pocket Team patch (foot, MGT, OHV, mounted) - on right shoulder one half inch below the right shoulder seam Other SAR achievement patches - centered on right sleeve a half inch below the team patch)

Preparation for a Call-Out
The key to getting yourself to a search as quickly as possible is getting yourself organized ahead of time. Follow these tips to keep you ready at all times:  Keep your gear, including your extra food and clothing for forty-eight hours that we discussed earlier, packed and ready to load in your car.

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Uniforms and Search Packs
    Keep your search clothing together in one place in your house ready to put on. Check your clothing and equipment each season to make sure that it's appropriate for the time of year. Replace your food before it goes stale. Make sure you have full canteens when you leave the house. You can do this by either keeping them full at all times (make sure you change the water every few weeks) or filling them before you leave the house. If you have to fill them before you leave, make sure you have some fail-safe memory device to remind you because nothing could be worse than arriving at the scene of a search without water. Check your batteries monthly. Always be prepared for bad weather and cold in the mountains no matter what time of year. Summer thunderstorms are common in the Sierras as is cold weather at night at high elevations. Make sure we can reach you and awaken you at night. You should not use answering machines to screen calls if you're with search and rescue. Turn the machine off and keep your pager where it can wake you.

  

Basic Equipment List
These are the minimum required items for individual members of all teams. Different teams will have requirements in addition to these below:  Water purifier (tables or filter)  Search pack  Food for twelve hours  Compass  Range flagging tape  Signal mirror  Note book and pen  Whistle  Knife (Pocket or straight)  Waterproof matches  Insect repellent  Fire starter  Sunscreen  Flashlight with extra bulb and batteries  Toilet Paper  50 feet of 1/4 inch rope  Paper bag for scent items  Survival blanket  Warm cap, gloves, and jacket  Ground cloth  Measuring tape  Two 12-hour light sticks  Personal first aid kit  One quart of drinking water  Pocket mask and latex gloves

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Field Training
Introduction to Field Training
Introduction to Field Training Field Training Officer Roles and Responsibilities SAR Classes
The El Dorado County Sheriff's Search and Rescue Field Training Program is a standardized program established to train new SAR members in the field. You will be allowed in the field with a fully trained partner as soon as you have completed all the necessary paperwork and you have your basic requirements. You will also need to have your search pack checked for completeness.

The program includes uniform standards of training and evaluating performance. The program's goal is to acclimate new SAR members to the Sheriff's Department's rules, training, and methods of operation. The program is designed as a performance-based training program, therefore the length of time it takes to become fully search ready will vary from member to member. New SAR members will be assigned to different Field Training Officers. For the program to successfully train new members, it is important to define roles, responsibilities, and evaluation criteria for everyone involved:

Qualifications of the Field Training Officers (FTO)
SAR members who want to be Field Training Officers must be fully search qualified. Your FTO will be a seasoned searcher, fully qualified in overall basic and unit standards of search and rescue.

Responsibilities of the Field Training Officers (FTO)
Responsibilities of the FTO will include, but not be limited to the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Evaluating and documenting the trainee's progress Frequently demonstrating tasks Describing procedures as they are carried out Guiding the trainee through the performance of tasks Evaluating the trainee's performance to increase necessary skills and provide positive feedback Enhancing the trainee's self-esteem and potential Remaining sensitive to the trainee's actions, reactions, attitude, and potential confusion Answering questions thoroughly.

Responsibilities of the new SAR trainee: 1. 2. 3. 4. Display eagerness and interest in training Actively participate in training and seek out additional training opportunities Be prepared to spend hours in the field Work continually to improve your skills.

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5. Maintain records and documentation 6. Demonstrate that you are learning the material taught 7. Ask questions!

EDC SAR Basic Academy Training
Before a new member is qualified to begin field training with a Field Training Officer (FTO), the new member must meet the following requirements: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. New Member Orientation Class or Manual Hold a current CPR card Hold a current first aid card Have the equipment checked off Have the approved uniform Be assigned to an FTO on their team

Individual units may require additional training before field training. In addition to the above, each member must complete the following training either in class or with an FTO. When all training is completed, the new member will be placed on the callout list. Proficiency must be demonstrated every two years by retaking the class or taking a challenge test for the course. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Man Tracking Aircraft safety Wilderness Survival Search Theory Land Navigation (map, compass, and GPS) Radio procedures Crime Scene Protection

Course objectives and standards for each training class are in Appendix A.

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APPENDIX A: Training Courses and Standards
1. Explain the difference between tracks, prints, clues, and signs 2. Describe the role of trackers in search theory 3. Explain the following terms: Leapfrogging, containment, shine, scuffing, heel mark, breakage, direction of travel, probability of area (POA), probability of detection (POD), point last seen (PLS), point last known (PLK) 4. Demonstrate how to cut for sign around a PLS 5. Demonstrate how to cut for sign around a roadway 6. Follow a trail for  mile using a tracking stick and the step by step method 7. Demonstrate several methods to mark clues 8. Demonstrate several methods to determine the age of prints and clues 9. Identify clues found in the field 10. Demonstrate how to report clues to the command post 11. Describe methods of interviewing potential witnesses in the field 12. Explain the role of flankers and point people on a tracking team

Aircraft Safety
1. Describe the limitations of Aircraft resources commonly used in the field 2. Explain the roles of helicopters in observation, insertion and extraction of ground teams, protection of ground teams, medical evacuation, and equipment transport 3. Demonstrate safety techniques for approaching and loading a helicopter, and entering and exiting a helicopter 4. Explain the dangers of working around a helicopter 5. Demonstrate hand signals for directing helicopters 6. Demonstrate use of safety equipment when working around helicopters 7. Explain how to set up a helicopter helispot both in daylight and night conditions 8. Demonstrate several methods for marking wind direction and speed

Wilderness Survival
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Identify two water-purifying methods Demonstrate water purifying in the field Explain the criteria for selecting an emergency shelter location Build an emergency shelter in the dark using items from the pack and the field Explain fire safety in the field Prepare a safe fire site Identify tinder, kindling, and fuel Demonstrate fire-starting techniques without matches

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Appendix A Radio Procedures
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. Describe the use of plain English when talking on the radio Explain the sequencing of a radio conversation Explain identifiers for Sheriff's Department personnel Explain identifiers for Search and Rescue personnel Demonstrate channel selection, changing channels, and channel lockout Complete a radio check when leaving the command post Demonstrate a radio check Describe the use of repeaters and relays Explain the limitations of radios in the field List procedures if radio communication is lost in the field Describe how to communicate to the command post that a subject is deceased Explain the use of multiple frequencies (tactical frequencies) Complete a simulated assignment using radio procedures

Search Theory
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. Explain procedures for checking in and out of the command post List the various phases of a search Describe what happens during each phase of the search Describe the Incident Command System and positions in the command post List several resources used during a search (helicopters, food service, dog teams, mutual aid). Demonstrate briefing and debriefing a search team assignment. Explain the terms POD and POA Explain the use and importance of POD and POA Describe the Mattson Theory. Describe the following search techniques: Grid, hasty, tracking, dog, and binary List the components of a reporting party interview Demonstrate correct interviewing techniques Describe special considerations for the subject's family members Explain the importance of maintaining contact with the reporting party Explain techniques for handling the press and media Explain establishing search priority and the Mattson theory Explain the physical areas of the command post Describe who is allowed in each area of the command post

Land Navigation
1. Describe the difference between road maps, Thomas Brothers Maps, 7  minute maps, 15 minute maps, and wilderness maps 2. Demonstrate the proper use of each map 3. Explain the township and range system down to the 1/6-section level 4. Identify the most commonly used map symbols 5. Demonstrate how to obtain a bearing 6. Demonstrate leapfrogging along a given bearing in daylight 7. Demonstrate leapfrogging along a given bearing at night 8. Describe the difference between true and magnetic north 9. Demonstrate how to convert between true and magnetic north 10. Describe techniques to determine direction without using a compass

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11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. Explain what a back azimuth is and how to obtain one Explain longitude and latitude Explain Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) Demonstrate converting latitude/longitude to UTM Demonstrate how to orient a map Demonstrate how to obtain a bearing between two points on a map Demonstrate how to obtain a bearing between two points on a map without orienting the map (protractor method) Describe the protractor method and how to use it Show how to measure distance on a map and in the field Explain contour lines Explain how an altimeter can help pinpoint location on a map Describe the use of K-Tags in the field Describe the markings found on a section corner in the field and on a map Demonstrate how to follow a compass course of at least four different bearings and distances Describe the GPS system and its limitations Demonstrate the use of a GPS Demonstrate relaying information back to the command post

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APPENDIX B: Individual Unit Descriptions, Equipment Requirements, and Specialized Training Requirements
The OHV Unit
Purpose: The four-wheel drive unit provides numerous services to Search and Rescue. Among them are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Ground transportation of ground searchers to and from assigned areas Trail scouting and reconnaissance Transportation and set-up of radio repeater system Transporting equipment Evacuation of search subjects Searching

In addition to four-wheel drive vehicles, the unit also uses snowmobiles, Snow-Cats, and motorcycles during winter searches. Vehicle Requirements: a four-wheel drive vehicle with tow hooks on front and back (vehicle must be in compliance with California Motor Vehicle Regulations. Equipment Requirements: In addition to the items listed in the equipment section of this manual, all members must have: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. Fifty feet of rope Fire extinguisher Tow strap and tree saver All weather boots Shovel Flares Extra Gas Extra Oil Jumper Cables Tool Kit Jack (high lift or bottle)

Additional Training Requirements: 1. 2. 3. 4. Four-wheel drive safety clinic at Prairie City Winching safety vehicle and equipment readiness class Basic off-road survival class Monthly Team Training

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Foot Team
Purpose: The ground team is made up of highly trained and skilled foot searchers. The ground team goes out day and night and in any weather. Searchers may be assigned to cover miles of rough brushy terrain, or they may go to campsites interviewing campers. Sizes of teams for individual searches range from two to eight, and in no circumstances do searchers ever go alone. Each team has an assigned radio and a team leader. Hiking and climbing in high altitudes with a full search pack is physically demanding and all foot searchers must be in top physical condition. Being prepared for all conditions is vital to the success of the ground team. The equipment list is extensive, however having the right equipment for the terrain and weather not only helps find lost subjects, but can save your life. Membership Requirements: We have no special requirements other than top physical condition and the willingness to buy what could be a considerable amount of equipment. Equipment Requirements: In addition to the equipment already mentioned in the equipment section in this manual, you'll need the following with you in your search pack: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Two large plastic trash bags Tracking stick Watch Earplugs Spare glasses Goggles or safety glasses Bandanna Personal medication

You must bring the following items with you in your vehicle: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Rain gear Extra clothing Sleeping bag High-powered flashlight with spare batteries and bulb Light stove Cooking and eating utensils Food for 48 hours Pack, duffel bag, or container large enough to carry all the above items

Training Requirements: Monthly Team Trainings Basic SAR courses

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Appendix B

Search Management
Purpose: The search management team has three prime functions. First, it plans the search by defining the search area and deciding on tactics and necessary resources. Second, it manages the search by deploying and supervising resources. Third, it supports the search with logistics, communications, and the command post. Search management personnel serve in one of several capacities: operations, planning, and logistics. Working together, these three functions ensure liaison with search units, document search operations, brief personnel, interview sources of information, maintain the status of situations, debrief teams, maintain communications, arrange transportation, and keep everybody dry, fed, and safe. Training Requirements: Classroom requirements: 1. Basic search theory class 2. Forty-hour search management class (strongly recommended and required for Operations and Planning Chiefs positions). 3. Monthly search management classes covering roles and responsibilities of the search management positions as well as the practical aspects of search management. 4. SEMS and ICS training Field Training Requirements: All members must demonstrate the following skills: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Initiate check in and personnel tracking Be able to start the hasty phase of a search Demonstrate ability to document a search Demonstrate a through briefing and debriefing Prepare and complete a team assignment Set up a command post to include radios, antennas, maps, equipment, and administrative requirements. Set up an initial camp infrastructure to include parking, first aid, kitchens, toilets, camping, and helispot. Develop a search plan Recognize and request special resource needs; cliff, swift, air transport, mine

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The Mounted Team
Purpose: The mounted team, formed in 1973, conducts search and rescue missions and other appointed functions. The chief advantages of horse and rider team of mounted searchers are greater mobility, better vision, higher loadbearing ability, and increased sensory resources from the animal itself. Membership Requirements: Members must own a horse or have one available at all times. They must also have a safe form of horse transport. Equipment Requirements: In addition to the list in section four, members must have the following: Maintained in Saddlebags: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Fifteen feet of ½ inch rope Breakaway rope ties (4) Signal blanket Orange flagging tape Halter and lead rope Absorbent pads (2) Vetwrap bandages (3) Hoof pick Fence pliers or cutters

Maintained in trailer or vehicle: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Twenty-four hours of food for both horse and rider Horse blanket or cooler Ten gallons of water for horses Insect repellent Small salt block Water buckets Curry comb/brush

Optional items: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Sleeping bag 5/8" rope for high line - 100 feet Shoeing equipment Easy boot 1 lb. Grain 1 lb. Oats Duct tape Extra latigo Extra cinch Heavy jacket

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Appendix B
Training Requirements: 1. Demonstrate appropriate horse qualifications and meet check off criteria on horse qualification record (record available from the mounted unit) 2. Demonstrate appropriate rider qualifications and meet check off criteria on rider qualification record (record available from the mounted unit) 3. Monthly Team Trainings

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Swiftwater Team
Purpose: The swiftwater team conducts surface search and rescue operations on the rivers and waterways of El Dorado County. El Dorado County's rivers have worldwide popularity among rafters, kayakers, and other recreational water users. Because of this, every season brings accidents, injuries, and fatalities that the swiftwater team responds to. The team also conducts swiftwater operations in conjunction with other search activity and supports other search and rescue and county resources. Swiftwater members work purely on the surface and do not engage in any diving activity, which is the sole province of the Sheriff's Boating Unit and Dive Team. Membership Requirements: All members must be excellent swimmers in good physical condition. The Sheriff‘s Office recommends that they be certified Swift Water Rescue Technicians. Equipment Requirements: In addition to the requirements in section four, members must have the following: 1. Personal Flotation Device 2. Long Wetsuit with gloves and booties 3. Rafting knife or other one-hand accessible knife

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Appendix B

The Cliff Team
Purpose: The Cliff Team conducts rescues and extractions from locations inaccessible to other SAR resources. Cliff rescue is a highly technical specialty that requires detailed knowledge of a variety of complicated rescue systems involving ropes, ascending, and descending equipment. Equipment Requirements: In addition to the equipment listed in section four, members need the following:

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APPENDIX C: Optional Equipment
The equipment list in this manual gives the required equipment you must have to go out on a search. However, here are some recommended items that many members have found valuable.  County Road Map - When you‘re called out, you‘ll often be given the location of the command post in reference to some county road. Although the people calling you out will try to give you detailed instructions about how to get there from where you are, it helps if you can pick up a good road map of El Dorado County. USFS Map of El Dorado National Forest - Most of the county is within the El Dorado National Forest. You can get free maps at the Forest Service visitors centers and ranger stations. They‘re especially good because they show forest service roads and cover virtually all of El Dorado County. Small bottle of rubbing alcohol - Use this as disinfectant after you handle casualties because we often don‘t have warm water and the right soap for thorough hand cleaning in the field. Ten to twelve feet of webbing to carry a litter - When evacuating an injured subject by litter, you can wrap the webbing straps around your shoulders to make it easier to carry the litter. Leather and wool gloves or mittens Headlamp or head holder for flashlight - On night searches, the headlamp keeps your hands free. Multiple-Use Pocket Tool - These have pretty much replaced the Swiss Army knives as the all-purpose outdoors tool and they all have the same basic design: a folding pliers with a variety of implements within the handles that all fold neatly into a roughly five inch shape. They usually have several screwdrivers, a strong file, wire cutters, a knife, a small saw, and the pliers. They come in leather or nylon belt cases and are indispensable for fixing things and for camp chores. They cost anywhere from $30 to $60, but as with the knives, don‘t buy a cheap imitation. Get the good quality ones from Gerber, SOG, Leatherman, or Buck. Latex examination gloves - Wearing these disposable skin-fitting gloves is mandatory for medical personnel whenever touching casualties. You can buy them in boxes of hundreds and it‘s a good idea to keep a pair in your car as well as your search pack. They‘re worth the investment because they‘re also handy around the house when working with compounds with potential long term dangers like motor oil and hair coloring. The ideal way to store them is in those 35mm plastic film containers. Small binoculars or telescope - These are valuable when searching broad open areas. You can dramatically increase the probability of detection of a subject by stopping occasionally and carefully viewing more distant areas through the glasses. You can find good lightweight compact sets for under thirty dollars. Disposable butane lighter - In a survival situation the three most crucial items are heat, shelter, and water. Veteran searchers and outdoors people usually carry many fire-starting implements with them at all times. It‘s not unusual for a member to carry, in addition to tinder material, wooden waterproof matches, a butane lighter (some carry an emergency extra one sewn into their clothing) , and a last-resort sparking device (usually the little magnesium blocks with a sparking steel attached). The disposable butane lighters hold up excellently to water and the best ones to get are those with the transparent base so you can see how full it is.


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Appendix C
 Ski Poles - No, not for skiing, but for walking in the snow. They‘re excellent to help you maintain your balance, push yourself forward, and probe ahead for footing. Don‘t spend a lot of money, because you can always find a used pair for two or three dollars at a thrift shop or flea market. Sawyer extractor snake and insect bite kit - These great little kits cost between $10 and $13 and consist of a powerful little vacuum syringe and several attachments. They work very well for bee stings and are the best way of extracting snake venom. Spare change for telephones - Stick a few dimes and quarters somewhere in your gear because you never know when you may have radio problems but may be near a pay phone. Chemical hand warmers - These are small packets that you activate by opening them, shaking them, and exposing them to air. They are good not only for warming you, but also for helping subjects whom you find during cold weather searches. Small strobe light for night searches - You can find these at between $10 and $20. One of the hardest parts of searching at night is being able to see the other members of your team. One of these lights attached to you makes it much easier for your team members to see you and also increases the chance that a lost subject will see you. Always ask your team members, though, if they mind your using one because some people don't like looking at them because of their intensity. Cheap emergency poncho - You can find these for under two dollars. Buy two. Stick one in your car for changing flats in bad weather and put another in your search pack. Assorted small items to think about: squares of aluminum foil (for reflectors, emergency cups, finger splint, sucking chest wounds), balaclava (face mask for freezing weather), earplugs (for helicopter rides or sleeping near noise), triangular bandages, thick rubber bands (all purpose use and an excellent fire starter), fine steel wool (for cleaning electrical contacts on batteries and radios and also an excellent fire starter), spare straps (for attaching pack to a horse or mule), foil-wrapped moistened towellettes e.g. Wash ‗n Dry Hardhat - many members like them because they protect your head from tree branches and falling stones. They also support a headlamp nicely. Protractor and ruler - for finding direction and distance on a topographic map. Road flares - great fire starters Zipper-pull compass or wrist compass - You often want to know only a general direction and do not want to have to pull out a regular compass. Altimeter - Not cheap, but often an excellent way to find yourself on a topographic map. Read the altitude, and then just find where the trail crosses that contour line. Altimeter watches are popular in Search and Rescue and the all-electronic ones read temperature and barometric pressure too. Orange hunter's vest - If you aren't wearing an orange outer garment, these inexpensive items will make you extra visible. Many also have pockets for your small items. Military pistol belt - These are the two-inch wide belts with grommets for attaching every conceivable device you have. By attaching it to the belt, you take the weight out of your pack and make it more accessible. Do not buy cheap imitations, as they fall apart. Get the military issue from one of the catalogs in the appendix.


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    Chalk sticks - For marking a campsite, building, or abandoned vehicle to let other teams know you've already been there. Powdered chalk in a squeeze bottle - for marking tracks. Blue chalk stands out better than red or yellow. Gore-tex socks - Wear them over regular socks and your feet stay dry no matter what. Flagging tape

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APPENDIX D: Suppliers of Equipment
The following list of catalogs and stores many SAR people shop at. It does not constitute an endorsement by the El Dorado County Sheriff's Department but is furnished as information from members to other members. Uniforms and Patches Neldine Valles EDSO SAR At All SAR Mtg Cabela's 812 13th Avenue Sidney, NE 69160-9555 (800) 237-4444 Patagonia 1609 W. Babcock St P.O. Box 8900 Bozeman, MT 59715-2046 (800) 638-6464 Shomer-Tec (police and military) Box 28270 Bellingham, WA 98228 (360) 676-5248 Smokey Mountain Knife Works P.O. Box 4430 Seviervile, Tennessee 37864 (800) 251-9306 L.L. Bean (outdoor) Freeport, Maine 04033-001 (800) 221-4221 PMI (technical gear) P.O. Box 803 Lafayette, GA 30728 (800) 282-7673 CMC Rescue Equipment P.O. Drawer 6870 Santa Barbara, CA 93160-6870 (800) 235-8951 B&B Enterprises (technical gear) Box 441-H Lewisburg, West Virginia 24091 (304) 772-3074 Gall's (public safety equipment) 2680 Palumbo Dr P.O. Box 54308 Lexington, KY 40555-4308 (800) 477-7766 Local Retail Stores REI (camping and backpacking) Folsom, Ca Life-Assist (medical supplies) 11277 Sunrise Park Drive (off Sunrise) Rancho Cordova, CA 95742 (800) 824-6016

Sundance Uniforms 4050 Durock Rd. Shingle Springs (530) 676-6900 Equipment and Clothing (Catalogs) Brigade Quartermasters (Military and outdoor) 1025 Cobb International Blvd Kennesaw, GA 30144-4300 U.S. Cavalry (military and outdoor gear) 855 Centennial Ave Radcliff, KY 40160-9000 (800) 777-7732 Search Gear 882 Bruce Lane Chico, CA 95928 (800) 474-2612

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APPENDIX E: SAR Terms and Acronyms
Air 21 AKA BLM CARDA CCC CDF Central CLEMARS Comm Van Cut for Sign CP CYA Debrief DF EDC EDNF EDSO ELT EOC ESAR ETA ETD Fallon FLIR GPS Grid Search H20 & H24 ICS K-Tag Life Flight MP Mutual Aid NASAR OES Overhead PLK PLS POA POD POS RP SAREX SARSAT SO SRT Topo Map USFS USGS WOOF CHP fixed wing aircraft from Sacramento ―Also Known As‖ U.S. Bureau of Land Management which manages much of the public land in this area California Rescue Dog Association which certifies dogs and their handlers California Conservation Corps California Department of Forestry County Fire, Sheriff, and Placerville Police radio and 911 center in Placerville California Law Enforcement Mutual Assistance Radio System (154.920 Mhz) Communications Vehicle (a large and a small van) Look for clues and tracks Command Post California Youth Authority (operates a SAR team) Post-search questioning to find exactly where teams searched and what they found Direction Finder - an electronic device that finds ELT‘s (see below) El Dorado County El Dorado National Forest El Dorado County Sheriff‘s Office Emergency Location Transmitter - an aircraft crash beacon Emergency Operations Center - part of the OES office Explorer Search and Rescue - part of the Boy Scouts of America Estimated Time of Arrival Estimated Time of Departure U.S. Naval Air Station, Fallon, Nevada has military search and rescue aircraft Forward Looking Infra Red - Helicopter-mounted infra-red (heat) detector Global Positional System – Satellite based locating system using hand-held devices Tight pattern search tactic CHP helicopter from Sacramento Incident Command System - an ad hoc law enforcement organizational structure Forest Service survey marker that helps to determine location Medical helicopter from Sacramento Med Center Missing Person Assistance to and from other counties for Search and Rescue National Association of Search and Rescue Office of Emergency Services - El Dorado County function under the Sheriff‘s Office Search Management Team on searches Place Last Known - subject‘s last known location Place Last Seen - subject‘s last sighting Probability of Area - ranking of likely search areas Probability of Detection - estimated percent of detection area a search team covered Probability of Success - method of assigning priorities to search areas Reporting Party - law enforcement terminology for the person reporting the incident Search and Rescue Exercise Search and Rescue Satellite - detects ELT‘s Sheriff‘s Office (Forest Service uses SO to refer to the Forest Supervisor‘s Office) Swift Water Rescue Technician Topographical Map that shows contours U.S. Forest Service U.S. Geological Survey Wilderness Outdoors Finders (SAR dog organization)

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Appendix G

APPENDIX F: Telephone Numbers and Radio Frequencies
Important Phone Numbers
SAR Hotline: 621-6555 SAR Training Line: 621-6569 El Dorado County Sheriff (Administrative Calls): 621-5655 El Dorado County Sheriff (Emergency Calls): 911 or 626-4911 El Dorado County Office of Emergency Services: 621-5895 Emergency Operations Center: 621-7440 Central Dispatch: (non-emergency calls): 621-6600 El Dorado County Sheriff South Lake Tahoe Division: 573-3000

Important Radio Frequencies
159.555 159.690 159.600 159.690 160.695 159.825 154.920 154.935 146.805 151.190 154.430 171.525 171.325 42.540 42.240 162.550 156.075 Sheriff‘s W/S Repeater Frequency 1 Sheriff‘s W/S Repeater Frequency 2 Sheriff‘s Tahoe-area Repeater Sheriff‘s Tahoe-area Tac Repeater Sheriff‘s ―Tac 3‖ channel (tactical) Sheriff‘s ―Tac 4‖ channel (tactical) CLEMARS 1 (Statewide tactical channel) CLEMARS 2 (Statewide tactical channel) KA6GWY, Local Amateur Radio Frequency County Fire Dispatch Frequency County Fire Command Channel USFS, ENF, Forest USFS, ENF, Admin CHP Station-to-Car CHP Car-to-Station Weather Channel (local) CALCORD (Fire/Police Coordination)

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APPENDIX G: Training Completion Form
Member:___________________________________ SAR ID:_______________

Minimum Requirement (see page 21)
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. New Member Orientation Complete Uniform Basic Equipment CPR Certificate Medical Training (First Aid or higher)

_____ _____ __________ __________ __________ __________

_____ _ ______ ______ ______ ______

_____ _____ _____ _____ _____

Basic Training (see page 21)
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Mantracking Aircraft Safety Wilderness Survival Radio Procedures Search theory Land Navigation Crime Scene Protection ______ ______ ______ ______ ______ ______ ______ ______ _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ _____

Other Specialized or unit training
Four-Wheel Drive Mounted Swiftwater Cliff
_________________________________________ _________________________________________ _________________________________________ _________________________________________ ________________________________________

______ ______ ______ ______
_________ __________ __________ __________ __________

_____ _____ _____ _____
_______ ________ ________ ________ ________

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Appendix G

Member Record of Events
Event (Search, training, meeting, etc) Date Hours Mileage

El Dorado County Sheriff's Search and Rescue  Page 39