The all-volunteer crews of both Sunshine Coast Search and Rescue teams (Land and Marine) have had a busy summer with taskings and continuous training exercises. A few close calls remind us of how quickly good intentions evaporate in the absence of good planning. We understand accidents happen; that’s why we remain on call 24/7/365.
On the water, Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue volunteers responded to a call at midnight recently when a small vessel carrying several enthusiastic campers lost power. The 3.5’ swells and heavy winds off North Thormanby Island required a swift response. After a search, our crew found the vessel (and its frightened passengers bracing the waves) thanks to their mobile devices. The only functioning light source on board. SOS signals from a handheld phone can work, as evidenced by the rescue however, having a flashlight, flare or strobe is required. More importantly, “wearing” a life jacket or personal flotation device is vital in situations where Mother Nature is working her powers. Being safe trumps vanity, every time. All boaters are reminded to “wear” their PFD’s.
On Land, there were two call outs to assist with BC Ambulance Service. One at Skookumchuck Narrows Provincial Park, the other at Smuggler Cove. Both calls were to assist elderly hikers and were resolved without injury. Please remember to bring plenty of food and water when out on trails. Be aware of potential fire situations and report wildfires immediately.
Complimentary Pleasure Craft Safety Checks were conducted by crew members at Secret Cove Marina in July. Over a dozen boat owners were treated to friendly boat safety and equipment inventory inspections by members of Station 12. Passing a Pleasure Craft Safety Check inspection ensures boaters have the right equipment on board, and qualifies boaters to receive discounts on insurance coverage. A precaution that pays.
An Open House and Fall Recruiting Drive is in the works for September 15 for RCM-SAR Station 12 at the Seaside Centre in Sechelt from 6-7:30pm. Both Society (administrative and fundraising) and Crew (on water) volunteers are needed. Play safe