Pennsylvania Search and Rescue Council

Official Meeting Minutes

September 29, 1990 (Saturday)

State Fire Academy, Lewistown

Groups represented:

Paid but not present

Coventry Canine SAR

DER - State Forests

Keystone SAR

Shenandoah Mountain Rescue Group, ASRC/MRA

Thornhurst VFD

Vigilant SAR

Paid members present-

Allegheny Mountain Rescue Group, ASRC/MRA

DER - State Parks

Greater Philadelphia SAR

EMRS SAR Services


SAVES (Shippensburg Area Vertical Evacuation and Search)

Rescue 40

Somerset County SAR

Observers (nonmembers)

Mifflin Co. Specialized SAR

PA Wing, Civil Air Patrol

S.T.R.I.K.E. K-9 SAR

Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency

Members last year; not present, dues not paid-

Juniata SAR

NorthEast SAR

Individuals present

Martha Ann Ackroyd RD 2 Box 46 Friedens, PA 15541 814-445-6689 (Somerset Co.)

Ken Boyles 1599 Doubling Gap Rd., Newville, PA 17241 717-776-5272 (DER-Parks)

Kim Carr (STRIKE)Keith Conover, M.D. 36 Robinhood Road, Pittsburgh PA, 15220 412-561-3413 (AMRG)

Garrett Den (? spelling of last name) (Gr. Philadelphia SAR)

Clyde Geary (no affiliation listed)

Jack Humbertson 355 Stoystown Rd., Somerset, PA 15501 814-443-3777 (Somerset Co.)

Roy Keiser (STRIKE)

Irv Lichtenstein 704 Preston Rd., Erdenheim, PA 19118-1327 215-233-3360 (GPSAR)

John Lihus???? (signature not legible) (dog handler from Pittsburgh area)

Bob Long PEMA P.O. Box 3321 Harrisburg, PA 17105

Peter McCabe 11034 Berrypick, Columbia, MD 21044 301-596-5554 (ASRC)

Carol Prosseda (STRIKE)

Greg Sassaman Cowan's Gap State Park HC 17266 Fort Loudon, PA 17224

Joe Thrash RD # 1 Box 75 Friedens, PA 15541 814-445-4762 (Somerset Co./CAP)

Bruce Trego 47 Forsythe St., Lewistown, PA 17044 717-242-0234 (Fire Academy/SAVES)

Ron Wisbith 43 Fifth Avenue Koppel, PA 16136 412-843-5378 (Rescue 40)

The meeting was called to order at 1015 hours by President Irv Lichtenstein. Minutes from last meeting were accepted as mailed to each member and distributed at meeting. Treasurer's report (Greg Sassaman): accepted as attached. (Attachment 1)

General Announcements:

        Our 800 number has been established as planned at the last meeting (1-800-MED-STAT in Pennsylvania, 412647-7828 elsewhere). As explained at the last meeting, the number is for "resource referral" (information) only, and will not actually dispatch any teams for the SAR Council. (But note that the Center for Emergency Medicine of Western Pennsylvania's STATCOM, who provides the SAR Council resource referral service, also provides dispatch service for two SAR Council members: AMRG and EMRS.)

Training Committee Report (Bruce Trego):

The November training exercise: was initially planned as a joint operation between PSARC and ASRC, and still is (some people had thought it was only a PSARC function). We discussed the plans briefly. Some complained about a lack of pre-planning despite several months of lead time. Per the President, the Training Committee will have a detailed plan to the President by the 15th of this month, including the number of victims, the area(s) of search, when the initial alert will go out, and a rough timeline for mobilization and demobilization, in writing. We will need referees, a designated safety officer, and search, medical, and evacuation plans for any real incidents that occur.

        The Training Committee consists of Bruce Trego, Joe Thrash, Ken Boyles, Larry Kerns, Peter McCabe. The Training Committee will meet after today's general meeting.

Membership Committee

Three applications for new membership have been received: S.T.R.I.K.E. K-9 SAR (complete)

Mifflin County Specialized SAR team (complete except for resource survey) Search 1 (missing letter, survey, Bylaws; these to be mailed to Irv)

All were referred to Membership Committee, which will meet after general business meeting. (Addendum: Membership Committee approved all 3 pending receipt of all supporting documentation; due to expressed concerns of some SAR Council members, Search 1 will receive a cautionary letter detailing the SAR Council's policy on recruiting and ethical behavior toward other teams and members of other teams.)

Regional Meeting Ad-Hoc Committee Report (Ken Boyles)

        Ken showed local groupings of member and non-member teams across the state. Based on his groupings, he recommends we establish the following regions, each meeting at a central point (in parentheses), and each to have a regional coordinator. He noted that it was important to invite non-SAR Council members to these meetings.

        Northwest (Erie/Allegheny National Forest): inactive at present. * Central (Mt. Union): Todd Horn of Mifflin County. North-Central (Emporia): pending, Joe Thrash to try to locate a suitable regional coordinator from area teams.

Boundaries for regions are 1-80; US 219; The Susquehanna River south and and U.S. Rt. 15 north. Accepted by acclamation. Maps attached (Attachment 2)

Special Order of the Day (Ad-Hoc nominating committee, Keith Conover)

Dr. Conover presented the following slate of officers as nominated by the Nominating Committee:

President: Irv Lichtenstein

Vice-President: Joe Thrash

Treasurer: Greg Sassaman

Secretary: Keith Conover, M.D.

Director: Peter McCabe

The floor was opened for further nominations. Ken Boyles nominated, and Martha Ann Ackroyd seconded, Peter McCabe for President. Martha Ann Ackroyd nominated, and Bruce Trego seconded, Larry Kearns for Vice President. Peter McCabe nominated Keith Conover for President; Keith quickly and emphatically declined. Greg Sassaman nominated, and Joe Thrash seconded, Ken Boyles to continue as Board Member. There being no further nominations, the Nominations were closed.

Ballots will be mailed out on or about October 15 by the Secretary; each nominee should prepare a short (100 word or less) biography and send it to the Secretary ASAP.

Old Business:

        Search First Responder Instructor names: A list with adresses is attached (Attachment 3). Our understanding is that any State Fire Academy Search Management (MSO/MSF) instructor may teach the Search First Responder course. Martha Ann Ackroyd showed her State Fire Academy Search Management instructor card and thus, we added her name, even though she was not on the list given us by the Fire Academy.

Informal Discussion:

New Business

(1) the need to make meetings meet the needs of those attending, rather than internal PSARC bureacratic matters, including (a) a chance to talk to members of other teams, and (b) to learn of search and rescue news, including new technical information.

(2) the need to avoid lengthy discussions for what should be a short business meetings.

The following motion was put forth by Ken Boyles, seconded by Keith Conover, and accepted by a unanimous vote:

(1) Follow Robert's Rules of Order strictly,

(2) keep extraneous discussion to a minimum (using the speak-once and 2 minute rules as needed),

(3) keep business to one hour and ten minutes,

(4) have everyone submit agenda items to the Secretary or President prior to each meeting,

(5) have a one-hour technical discussion after the business meeting (having the President establish and publicize a specific topic in advance),

(6) have a brief session when each team presents observations on recent happenings, and

(7) have the Board meet at 10, and the general meeting start at 11.

The meeting adjourned at 1325.

Respectfully submitted, Keith Conover, M.D., Secretary, October 8, 1990.


(1) Treasurer's Report

(2) Maps for region proposal

(3) Official List of Search First Responder Instructors (4) SAR Resource Information Policy proposal

(5) Membership Inquiry Policy