We have 10 applicants that are going to go into our Member In Training program. Over the next four weeks they will have the opportunity to learn all about Arrowsmith Search and Rescue. They will get to know our members and how we navigate through the terrain that we work in, along with some basic Ground Search and Rescue skills. We started them off with a hike up to Wesley Ridge to learn some basic search skills and being clue aware.
During our monthly group training, our focus was Personal Preparedness and Survival skills. We reviewed with the group alot of interesting subjects that will prepare us for warmer weather searches and rescues:
- plant and animal safety - awareness - treatment and care of someone with heat exhaustion or heat stroke - how to prevent heat exhaustion or heat stroke - critical thinking in times of pressure - interviewing skills when on a search - 24 hour packs and team member being rescue ready
Shortly after SAR members arrived back home from the Cook Creek rescue we received a call from @albernivalleyrescue asking for rope team leader and members to assist with a rope rescue at Sarita River near Bamfield. Seven members of ASAR’s rope team travelled by vehicle to Alberni’s hall and were sent to drive the road to Bamfield. A medical team from Alberni was flown by helicopter to the scene but unfortunately the helicopter was not available to fly more members in or assist with the rescue. When the Teams arrived on scene the injured man’s friends had been able to bring him to a logging road near the area he had fallen using a small inflatable boat as a stretcher. With darkness falling it was necessary to call in 442 Squadron from Comox who were able to land the Cormorant Helicopter nearby and take the injured man to hospital. ASAR members arrived home shortly #HelicopterRescue #hikerreacuee#Sar#asarr#GSARe#helicoptersearch#helicoptersearchandrescuetersearchandrescue ... See MoreSee Less
Busy day for Arrowsmith SAR on Sunday May 22. The Team was called by BC Ambulance at 2:00 pm to rescue an injured mountain biker who had taken a serious fall on the trails off Cook Creek Road. Members were immediately dispatched by vehicle and UTV to locate and assess. Due to the reported serious injuries request was made for helicopter winch rescue, North Shore Rescue was dispatched to stand by at the hangar and be ready to take off. Fortunately, Arrowsmith SAR members were able to reach the injured man and load the stretcher on our UTV to bring him out to the ambulance. North Shore Rescue was stood down before take off. The man was then taken to a waiting Air Ambulance to be flown to hospital.
On Saturday, May 18th the Silver Spur Riding Club held their annual fundraising pledge ride. This year they dedicated the proceeds to Arrowsmith Search and Rescue. At the end of the event, more than $1,500 was presented to ASAR's Ken Peters. Thanks to all who attended!
The Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach Sunrise and The Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach held a successful bottle drive last year to help Arrowsmith Search and Rescue purchase IT equipment for their new Operations Centre. The funds from the bottle drive combined with a Grant from The Rotary Foundation allowed ASAR to purchase over $9200 worth of computers and associated equipment. In a pleasant surprise, The Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach Sunrise donated an additional $5000 which will be used to purchase rescue equipment.
Rotary has been a great supporter of ASAR over the years which has been tremendous and has allowed us to concentrate on our work to save lives by bringing home the lost and injured.
Arrowsmith SAR was called out on the evening of May 11, 2022 to search for two teenage girls who had become disoriented while hiking in the Bowser area. Teams were quickly dispatched to the area between McColl Forest Service Road and Crosley Road. Using a “ping” location from the 911 dispatcher they were located in a short time wet & cold, but otherwise unhurt. They were then led out of the woods and brought back to their relieved Parents.
Arrowsmith SAR makes use of technology on all their tasks with Team Members having a mapping app in their phones that shows the area and any markers that are put on the map by the SAR Management Team on the Command Vehicle or remotely. SAR Managers can also track Teams live as long as they have cell service.
Remember to tell someone where you are hiking and what time you expect to be back. Adventure Smart has great tips on their website, www.adventuresmart.ca, as well as an app you can put on your phone to file a trip plan with a trusted person.
On May 2, 2021, Arrowsmith Search and Rescue had a call out to rescue an injured hiker with multiple injuries. She was stabilized and extracted by helicopter. Philip Wolf, editor of the PQB News and Vancouver Island Daily talks with Parksville resident Maureen LaFleche who was rescued, and Nick Rivers, ASAR Search Manager.
From time to time Arrowsmith Search and Rescue is called on to rescue pets. Why do we do this? First of all, we like animals so we want to help. But also we don't want people to put themselves at risk trying to rescue their pets. Sometimes pets will get themselves into precarious situations where the owner would be risking injury or worse by trying to rescue them.
We bring our rope rescue expertise to bear when we do this, and we do everything to a very high standard of safety. Our rope team members are highly trained and certified, and all of the gear we use is also certified to do rope rescue safely. Even if the animal is not in a particularly dangerous spot, carrying a heavy dog down a steep trail in your arms is not a very safe thing to do, and we are always happy to help.
So far this year, ASAR has been tasked twice to rescue dogs. The first task was on Thursday, March 24th. Arrowsmith Search and Rescue were called to rescue a dog named Scout who had fallen into Englishman River near the end of Englishman River Road. Teams arrived on scene to find that Scout had crossed the river with a suspected broken leg and one person swam across to help. The team decided that the best option was to drive around through Mosaic's North West Bay Logging Division and get close enough to do a stretcher carry through the bush. ASAR members were able to bring Scout out on a stretcher back to their owner who then transported them to the vet.
A month later, on Sunday, April 24th, ASAR was tasked to rescue a dog named Finnegan on the Wesley Ridge trail. He had an injured hip/leg and was exhausted. Teams mustered quickly and hiked up the trail, loaded Finnegan and carried him down to his owner's car. The operation took about two hours. Rope rescue belays were set up the entire way down and Finnegan was returned safely with his owners to the trail parking lot.
We're recruiting! Interested in joining ASAR? Now's your chance. If you love the outdoors, like a challenge and want to help others, we'd like to hear from you. And if you want to get involved but aren't able or ready to do field work, we have opportunities in our support team too.