While the Central Cariboo Search and Rescue hall is all quiet on the western front, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic the crew has adapted operations to keep members and the public safe. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Central Cariboo Search and Rescue implements adaptive measures for COVID-19 response

In an effort to respond to emergencies during the COVID-19 pandemic Central Cariboo Search and Rescue (CCSAR) began making some changes several weeks ago.

“We were very proactive due to the leadership of our Chief Rick White,” said CCSAR media spokesperson Debra Bortolussi. “When Rick saw what was happening in Europe we had phone call meeting, cancelled practices and divided our crews into response teams.”

Each team has a chief, a manager, a team leader and four to six members.

Teams rotate, taking turns being on call.

Between the existing auto-ex and land-sar teams there are enough managers, she added.

“Let’s say team A goes to a call and the dispatcher indicates the patient has flu-like symptoms or COVID-19. Crew members would wear protective gear, attend the patient, and then go off duty and all get tested if needed,” Bortolussi explained.

Crews are wiping down all gear, trucks and clothing after a call before re-entering the CCSAR hall on Mackenzie Avenue to limit exposure.

Read more: COVID-19: Williams Lake resident encourages everyone to ‘make some noise’ for essential workers

They responded to a motor vehicle incident on Monday, March 23, on Highway 20, with one team and another one on backup.

“We encourage the public to make sure and let the 911 dispatcher know if you have flu symptoms if you are calling for aid,” Bortolussi said.

Search and rescue units, police, ambulance, fire departments and hospitals cannot just close the door, she added.

“We were very fortunate to have been proactive and taken the situation seriously right away.”

All crew members are volunteers.

Read more: CCSAR and neighbouring SAR members acquire ice rescue certification



news@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CoronavirusEmergency Preparedness

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Williams Lake cow boss statue replacement options explored

Statue was modelled after Evan Howarth, former cow boss at Cotton Ranch

HAPHAZARD HISTORY: Ox team freighters play important role in Cariboo Gold Rush

The Cariboo Wagon Road was to provide a direct and dependable route

Williams Lake-filmed ‘Because We Are Girls’ to be streamed free on NFB website

Acclaimed movie among seven documentaries to debut at NFB.ca in July

B.C. accommodators need phone lines to light up as in-province travel given green light

Travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic have decimated the tourism and hospitality industries

300 Cache Creek residents on evacuation alert due to flood risk as river rises

Heavy rainfall on Canada Day has river rising steadily, threatening 175 properties

First glimpse of Canada’s true COVID-19 infection rate expected mid-July

At least 105,000 Canadians have tested positive for COVID-19 since the coronavirus was identified

Police ramp up efforts to get impaired drivers off B.C. roads this summer

July is dedicated to the Summer CounterAttack Impaired Driving Campaign

Migrant workers stage multi-city action for full status amid COVID-19 risks

‘COVID-19 has exacerbated an existing crisis’

Okanagan school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Most Read