SARVAC Welcomed in New Brunswick!


This weekend 81 Ground Search and Rescue Volunteers from across New Brunswick are meeting this weekend in Oromocto for another instalment of the SARVAC “Strengthening the GSAR Role in Canada” project supported by Public Safety Canada, and the National Search and Rescue Secretariat and the New Initiatives Fund.

Attendees will attend sessions on a variety of SAR tropics such as:

  • Road Closure Safety, discussing safety and duties when staffing roadblocks for special events – Constable Patrick Small – Traffic Safety Section, Fredericton Police Force
  • SAR Explorer (SARX), a dedicated mapping and planning tool for SAR Teams – Norman Deschamps
  • Searching for Words,  finding your message and how to share it with traditional and social media – Alex Vass, RCMP Strategic Communications Specialist
  • The Stress Continuum, How to identify normal stress vs when to look for help and the impacts of stress and how to cope – Tracy Penney-Lockhart and Nancy French, Mental Health and Addictions.
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), a demonstration of the SAR capabilities of UAVs – Constable John Pitcher, UAV Pilot – RCMP
  • Training and Working with SAR Dog Teams, the State of Maine experience – Deborah Palman
  • AdventureSmart Trainers Workshop: Program Update and Program Overview, Samantha Warman, NB AdventureSmart Coordinator
  • CSA National GSAR Standards, An update on the CSA National SAR Training Standard – Paul Olshefsky, SARVAC Project Manager and retired Parks Canada Safety Specialist and Dog Handler
  • Forensic Anthropology and the Recovery of Bones, discussions on the role of GSAR in the recovery or skeletal remains, bone recognition, scavenger scatter patterns and archaeological recovery methods – Moira McLaughlin, Department of Anthropology St. Thomas University
  • GSAR and TMR Radio and Repeaters, discussions about TMR radios, usage and maintenance of GSAR radios and the use of Repeaters – Kenn Hong, President of NBGSARA.
  • GSAR members: Spotting from aircraft, introducing scanning techniques for spotting aircraft including information concerning hazards and safety for GSAR members around Helicopters – Mike Blizzard, NB CASARA
  • Intro to ICS, a standardized on-site management system designed to enable effective, efficient incident management by integrating a combination of facilities, equipment personnel, procedures, and communications operating within a common organizational structure – Don Tupper, Emergency Measures Organization, New Brunswick
  • Lost Person Behaviour, the cornerstone of SAR efforts.  Based upon a landmark study, Robert Koester’s book Lost Person Behaviour is the definitive guide to solving the puzzle of where a lost person might be found – Blair Doyle, Halifax SAR
  • Project Lifesaver, a radio frequency tacking program for people with dementia, autism, or down syndrome who are prone to wander and not find their way back. – Gerald and Twila Arsenault, PEI Ground Search and Rescue


Thanks to all attendees, presenters and the organizing committee for putting this valuable training event successful.

Next stop is Quebec!