Roger Livesey

Campbell River Search and Rescue getting to know the ropes

The rope rescue team trains regularly throughout the year to ensure they are ready when called into action

Jamie Turko

Special to the Mirror

 

This past Sunday, Campbell River Search and Rescue (CRSAR) members trained with some of the equipment that has been purchased during the last year.

The rope rescue team trains regularly throughout the year to ensure they are ready when called into action. On Sunday, they were in the Oyster River canyon.

Regular fundraising efforts cut into the available time members have to practice, but the rope rescue team still manages to put in a combined 300-400 hours of training each year to ensure an efficient rescue can take place. Fundraising and donations have allowed CRSAR to add a few new, modern rescue devices to their equipment during the last couple of years.

The MPD (multi purpose device) is a piece of rescue equipment that is changing the way rescues are conducted around the world. CRSAR recognized the potential of this device and was one of the first rescue teams in the province to begin training with it and using it for rescues.

The MPD is exactly what its name implies; one device that can do several things: It can be used to lower a rescue team and control their descent; it can be used as a back-up device and should an equipment failure occur, it will stop the rescuer from falling. It can also be used as a pulley to efficiently control the rope while raising a stretcher back to the top of a cliff or embankment.

It greatly speeds members’ ability to convert from lowering something to raising it because the rope never needs to be disconnected from the device. This increases safety.

Several other pieces of equipment have also been purchased that allow CRSAR able to rig a rope rescue system faster, operate it easier, and increase safety over traditional rope rescue systems. This is due to generous donors from the community and the fundraising efforts of the group.

Campbell River SAR appreciates greatly the support it receives from the community and the more donations it receives, the more time members can spend training. CRSAR consists of 40 unpaid volunteers that often take time from work and family in order to look for and rescue others in need of assistance.

None of the equipment purchased is funded by the province. All equipment is paid for by funds raised from fundraising and donations. Every dollar is donated greatly appreciated.

For more information about CRSAR, or to make a donation, visit crsar.ca.