Following six weeks of comprehensive classroom and field training, the initial session of the National Search and Rescue Academy (NSARA) successfully graduated 22 students on November 9th.
Graduates included participants from the National Park Service, Department of Defense, and Department of Homeland Security. The academy was held at the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center near Bridgeport, California.
This program, intended for entry-level federal employees, provides participants with a venue to efficiently attain field search and rescue skills in a single condensed format, which otherwise typically requires numerous years of career development.
This core program provides participants with essential rescue skills in ground search operations, the incident command system, swiftwater rescue, technical rope rescue, search management, basic aviation safety, and Remote - Emergency Medical Responder (R-EMR).
Field exercises, mock rescues, and tabletops scenarios were completed by the participants to develop skill proficiency.
NSARA has been developed in cooperation with the Department of Defense and includes a rigorous physical fitness regime. All participants were also required to complete the Marine Corps physical fitness test.
The next NSARA Academy session will be conducted from March 11th to April 19th in Northern Arizona. The training announcement will be posted on InsideNPS (under WASO- Emergency Services- Search and Rescue) on November 30th.