Shawn Beckett

Cadets learn skills from Greater Victoria search and rescue veterans

Youth inspired by experiences of local search and rescue groups

Search and rescue groups from across Greater Victoria joined together this week to help educate young campers at the Albert Head Cadet Summer Training Centre.

The one-day event included presentations from CFB Esquimalt Urban Search and Rescue team, Victoria Urban Search and Rescue, Metchosin Search and Rescue – complete with rescue dog – and the Metchosin Emergency Program.

“Learning about search and rescue is a part of our basic training. Today they are learning (more) about urban aspects of search and rescue. We don’t usually cover that,” said officer cadet Sarah Lumley, who was working at the camp.

Commander Glenn Cooper of CFB Esquimalt’s team spoke to 50 cadets from across the province on how to be prepared in the event of an earthquake.

“Hopefully we will never have to try out these techniques,” he said.

Cadet Thomas Hadizadeh, from Vancouver, was very interested in learning how to rescue civilians from a collapsed building.

He and the rest of the cadets learned how to drill and cut through concrete to rescue trapped people.

“It’s really scary to think about, but it’s important to know because you know (the big one) is going to happen. I am most amazed to learn that wood can hold 600 pounds at the point of contact,” Hadizadeh said.

“I am also really interested in learning how to be self sufficient in case I ever get separated from the group.”

Stephanie Dunlop, Metchosin emergency program co-ordinator, talked to the teen cadets about emergency kits and what survival gear to pack.

“I want to teach the cadets to be prepared for every situation whether they are out camping, driving on the roadway or at home,” Dunlop said.

She stressed it’s always important to have some form of communication on hand at all times, including radio, a cellphone or GPS device.

Other important items to pack include flashlights and protective clothing or barriers, for both hot and cold weather.

David Richardson, the rescue dog handler with Metchosin Search and Rescue team, explained to cadets how he trains his dog Mack, a border collie. The dog uses both tracking and air scent techniques to locate people.

When tracking, the dog is on a harness with his nose to the ground following one particular scent. When using air scent to track missing persons, a dog wanders and follows any human scent he can find.

“We mostly use air scent, because often our subjects have been missing for eight to 12 hours,” Richardson said. “We have to train him in a very positive way, you can’t train a rescue dog without positive reinforcement.”

Richardson and Mack have attended 38 incidents in the dog’s three years on the job.

The cadet camp runs through Aug. 16 at Albert Head.

charla@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Canucks host pre-season game, training camp in Victoria

Practices to be open to the public; Game against Calgary Flames set for Sept. 16

Verdict expected on July 22 in trial of care aide accused of sexual assault

Closing arguments heard Monday in Victoria courtroom

Easter Seal’s Drop Zone gives participants chance to rappel down 13-storey Victoria building

Event supports Easter Seal’s services, specifically their camp in Shawnigan

Juan de Fuca Marine Trail re-opens after lengthy repairs

The trail has been closed since February

Jeff Montgomery claims another Strawberry Cup at Western Speedway

Langford-based Montgomery family has deep roots at the track

VIDEO: Sexting teens at risk of depression and substance abuse, Canadian study says

Use of alcohol, cigarettes and marijuana were also found to be associated with sexting

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of June 18

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

VIDEO: Toronto Raptors announcer credited with calming crowds after shooting

Matt Devlin, the Raptors’ play-by-play announcer since 2008, was praised for preventing panic from spreading

Mini-horse visits residents at Lower Mainland care home

Gunner turned a visit with grandpa into a major event for everyone at the residence

Women sue former Vancouver cop over alleged sexual abuse during pimp case

Two women claim James Fisher caused psychological trauma during the Reza Moazami investigation

First ever Indigenous person to join the RCMP to be honoured in B.C.

Hawk Kelly said becoming a Mountie was his dream job as a kid

Deadline for cabinet to decide future of Trans Mountain expansion is today

International Trade Minister Jim Carr described the decision as ‘very significant’

Dash-cam video in trial of accused B.C. cop killer shows man with a gun

Footage is shown at trial of Oscar Arfmann, charged with killing Const. John Davidson of Abbotsford

Suicide confirmed in case of B.C. father who’d been missing for months

2018 disappearance sparked massive search for Ben Kilmer

Most Read