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Vernon Search and Rescue Group Society (“Vernon SAR”) is a volunteer organization, which has provided search and rescue services to the North Okanagan region of BC’s interior, and assisted other regions in the Province when requested, since 1960.
We are a busy group, with an average of 39 calls annually, ranking 8th out of the province’s 80 teams. And our call value is continuing to rise, with a record high 58 calls in 2015 and already 51 calls for 2016!
Vernon SAR is much like a volunteer Fire Department, except that Vernon SAR volunteers do not receive any compensation for call-outs. Based on the average 2,700 man-hours spent annually on tasks, this is equivalent to an in-kind donation in excess of $65,000 annually (not including training or administrative time committed).
In order to continue to provide search and rescue services in a safe, effective, and timely manner, Vernon SAR maintains specialized equipment and its members regularly take specialized training. But, as equipment ages and training expires, there is an ongoing cost to maintain the existing operational capacity.