Barriere’s Search and Rescue Association is currently looking back on 35 years of service to the community, and it’s surrounding area. During all of those years volunteer members have consistently been there, to train, and to assist when they are needed.
At this time Barriere SAR has 20 active members, and 12 additional members who are reserve or on call. Many of the active members are recently new to the organization.
Although this may seem like a lot of members, the group says they still need new members to function well during all possible scenerios, and to cover if not everyone can responds; an increase in membership would benefit the services that they provide.
The group meets on the second Tuesday of each month at their hall on Barriere Town Road (next to the fire hall), and they hold a practice once a month on the fourth Tuesday of each month.
The practice on Nov. 28, at their hall was well attended. Barriere SAR acting- president Todd English, gave a brief explanation about the structure and operation of the group for the benefit of new members.
“Our members are part of a community resource to assist the RCMP, BC Ambulance Service, Thompson Nicola Regional District (TNRD), the District of Barriere, and federal and provincial agencies in search and rescue, highway rescues and civil emergency operations,” said English. “We are called out mainly by BC Ambulance for accidents and RCMP for searches. We then contact members through our radio system.”
English noted that SAR members have their radios with them at all times.
“Those who are available will respond and come out to the call,” said English, “While in the truck on the way to a call, we discuss what we have to do when we get to where we are needed.
“We may be called to assist with motor vehicle accidents, ground search and rescue, and more.
“This means that our members are not only part of searches and rescues but are also trained to handle most emergency situations.”
English noted that not everyone in their group needs to be skilled in searching, rescuing or extracting people from vehicles.
“We also need radio and computer techs, and we need coordinators and managers as well,” said English, “We like to encourage anyone who is interested in joining Barriere SAR to get in touch with us or come to one of our regular monthly meetings.”
You can find out more by calling Todd English at 250-672-1864, or Michelle Johnson at 250- 672-5995.