Pennsylvania Search and Rescue Council

The regular quarterly meeting of the Pennsylvania Search and Rescue Council convened at 1015 hours on Saturday, June 24, 1989 at the Pennsylvania State Fire Academy, Lewistown, Pa.

The minutes of the previous meeting were approved as published. Treasurer Greg Sassaman's report was read and placed on file. He also presented a list of the member organizations whose dues are current.

Inquiries from prospective members were received and invitations to attend SAR Council meetings have been sent. The prospective members have not yet made formal application for membership.

Presentation materials from the International Conference on Emergency Health Care Development, Viasat Telecommunications, and the IAFC Special Rescue Unit Survey were handed out. Copies of the SAR Council master contact data file were distributed to those in attendance.

It was noted that despite two mailings of the forms and three requests in the Council meeting notice that data contained in the file has not been updated since 1986 in some instances.

The Legislation Committee reported that the draft SAR bill has been processed by the sponsoring House member's staff and will be assigned a bill number on formal introduction. It is expected that the bill will be referred to the House Committee on Government Operations. Hearings will be scheduled following the summer recess, probably in August, 1989.

Members were again reminded that mission reports must be filed with Key Boyles of the DER to provide a statistical description of search in Pennsylvania. This data will be needed for testimony before the legislature on the SAR bill.

A Nominating Committee was formed with Geg Sassaman as Chairman. All officers, a three year term on the Board and a one year term on the Board are open. Current office holders are eligible for re-election.   Kevin Parkes, Secretary, has indicated that due to work pressures he will not run for re-election. Caroline Hebard's seat on the Board, one year remaining, was declare vacant due to non-attendance at Council meetings.

The Training Committee was reactivated. Bruce Trego is the chairman and liaison with the State Fire Academy. Other members include Joe Thrash and Bruce Barton.


July 30--GPSR, Gary Derr: Mantracking, 8 hours tentative location--Tyler State Park, $10 per person includes cold lunch and handouts. PREREGISTRATION REQUIRED, call 215 233 3360.

August 27--GPSR, Tom Eckert: Water Rescue Phase 1, tentative location Pinchot State Park and Connewago Creek. Course is FREE, bring own lunch, swimming gear, PFD's. Preregistration recommended

for location confirmation.

Sept. 16-17--Search First Responder, Indiana County Fire School. Also in Indiana County--Managing Search Operations. Contact Joe Thrash.

At 1125 the Council adjourned and reconvened as a Committee of the Whole on Training to discuss the goals and direction of the newly reformed committee. The committee has been directed to establish a formal liaison with the State Fire Academy through the SAR Curriculum Committee. This committee of the Academy has approved Managing Search Operations (MSO)as an official course. Where MSO is a requirement for other courses, Managing the Search Function (MSF) as presented by NASAR will be deemed acceptable for meeting the MSO requirement. The Search First Responder course will be the prerequisite for the MSO course. This course is currently being taught by DER personnel and additional instructors will be trained as the course is transitioned to the Fire Academy. The final two courses are Basic and Advanced Grid Searcher. This course has been tested and Ken Boyles will be supplying the course proposal materials to the curriculum committee.

The Training Committee has also been directed to develop standard methods of conducting operations where more than one SAR unit or agency is involved. This standardization task will include developing documentation, methods of operation, and standard terms.

The Committee adjourned at approximately 1230 hours.

Bruce Barton presented an abbreviated version of a presentation on American rescue efforts in Armenia. A lively discussion followed.