The Deschutes County Sheriff's Office is accepting applications from members of our community who are interested in becoming a Search and Rescue volunteer.
Deschutes County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue (DCSO SAR) is one of the busiest search and rescue units in the state of Oregon. In 2016, DCSO SAR completed over 400 missions and trainings. Our Volunteers are highly skilled and range from general searchers to those capable of highly technical missions such as Mountain Rescue, Swift Water Rescue, Diving operations and more.
Applicants must be at least 21 years of age, and if selected, are required to complete the DCSO SAR Academy, which consists of approximately 100 hours of training. This year's academy will begin on April 3rd, with Volunteers graduating on May 11th. Generally, training occurs on Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6pm-9pm, which consist of classroom exercises and is followed up with a day of training on Saturday for outdoor practical exercises.
Academy attendees will receive instruction in several areas including, but not limited to: navigation, tracking, wilderness survival, search tactics, first aid/CPR and how DCSO SAR operates. Included in the academy, is a "pack test", which consists of a five mile hike (2 1/2 miles uphill and 2 1/2 miles downhill) carrying a 25 lb. back pack. The time limit for this test is 100 minutes. Each academy attendee will be assigned a mentor to assist with the successful completion of the academy.
Applications can be found online at https://www.deschutes.org/hr/page/job-and-volunteer-center and must be submitted by January 27th, 2017 at 5 PM.
Once applications are reviewed, applicants that meet minimum qualifications will be contacted and required to attend an informational session. Applicants will also be required to attend an oral board interview. A background investigation will be completed for all applicants who are selected after the oral board interview.
Some qualities necessary include the ability to fit in with our current volunteers, a good attitude and the ability to function as a team player. There is a $100 entry fee for those selected, which covers initial Search and Rescue Volunteer clothing issued upon graduation from the academy.
Additional questions can be answered by telephoning the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office Special Services Unit at 541-388-6501, as well as going online to https://sheriff.deschutes.org/divisions/special-services/search-and-rescue/.