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* Phase II of International Data Collection Project Begins
* NASAR Ends SARNEWS Contract
* Register for SARSCENE 2005
* Lesson Learned Center - Wildfires
* Lessons Learned Information on Terrorism
* NIMS Compliance Assessment Tool Released
* GeoCommunity Resource
* FEMA Releases Updated "Are You Ready?"
* SAR Dogs Trained to Find Turtles
* Brain in a Dish to Fly SAR Missions?
* Alert and Search Technology Needs to Advance
* DeLorme Magnetic Declination Update

 Online version at www.SARNEWS.com 2/25/2005
dbS Begins Phase II of International Data Collection Project:
Your help is still needed!

dbS is pleased to be part of a US Department of Agriculture grant which
allows the collection and analysis of SAR statistics from around the
world. New Probability of Area and survivability computer models will
be developed that are specific to subject type, eco-region, terrain,
land-features, and several other factors. Several new subject types are
being developed. Over 26,000 SAR incidents have already been collected
from places such as Australia, the UK, Canada and the US. Additional US
states and other nations are expected soon.

However, data is still needed from several eco-regions. We are especially
looking for SAR cases from California, cold domains, deserts, and prairie
or grass land areas. Data in an electronic format is preferred. Contact
Robert Koester directly at 434.293.5502 or robert@dbs-sar.com. Visit the
web to download a spreadsheet with the needed fields or see examples of



Effective February 1, 2005 NASAR has decided to no longer sponsor
SARNEWS.com in order to cut costs.  SARNEWS.com has always been published
by dbS Productions and will continue as a free newsletter to its 8,000
current subscribers and all of its future subscribers. However, we are
looking for a sponsor to help defray costs. If interested, contact us at


Register for SARSCENE 2005

The fourteenth annual Canadian Search and Rescue conference, SARSCENE
will be held in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, October 5-8, 2005.
It includes four days of presentations, demonstrations, a tradeshow,
SAR games, training sessions and an awards banquet.  Co-hosted by the
National Search and Rescue Secretariat and the PEI Emergency Measures
Organization, SARSCENE 2005 kicks off on October 5 with the ninth annual

The conference is a unique opportunity for SAR personnel to share their
expertise and ideas with over 600 participants from air, ground and
marine organizations across Canada and around the world. Don't miss
the early registration deadline of August 31, 2005.


Lesson Learned Center - Wildfires

Ever wish you could go to one website to learn from the mistakes and
lessons learned by other responders? Now you can. The wildfire
community has set up an excellent site full of reports, simple lessons,
organizational leadership, after action reviews, etc.  The site
provides an excellent model for any organization to follow.


Lessons Learned Information on Terrorism

Protecting our nation against the threat of terrorism is an
increasingly complex effort. Everyday frontline responders at the
local, state, and federal levels are creating new and innovative best
practices while exercises and real-world incidents produce valuable
lessons learned.

The center is a free and secure system open only to vetted emergency
response providers and homeland security officials. The central
component of LLIS.gov is a collection of peer-validated
lessons learned and best practices developed in consultation with, and
validated by, emergency responders. LLIS.gov also houses an extensive
collection of homeland security-related materials, including hundreds
of after-action reports from federally sponsored exercises and a
comprehensive library of documents, reports, directories, and manuals.
Users also have access to an updated list of homeland security
exercises, events, and conferences. The system encourages online
collaboration via information exchange tools, including secure e-mail,
message boards, and a feedback tool that allows user submissions.


NIMS Compliance Assessment Tool Released

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National
Incident Management System (NIMS) Integration Center (NIC) have
released a web-based self-assessment system that will allow federal,
state, tribal, and local departments and agencies to evaluate their
incident preparedness and response capabilities. The voluntary system,
the National Incident Management Compliance Assessment Support Tool
(NIMCAST), is also designed to help users determine what they need to
do to comply with NIMS requirements. Future Department of Homeland
Security grants will be tied to the adoption of NIMS. Access NIMCAST at


GeoCommunity Resource

The GeoCommunity is a portal for geospatial technology professionals, a
gathering place for geographic information systems, CAD, mapping, and
location-based industry professionals, enthusiasts, and students. Visit
the site for spatial news and up-to-date information about software,
careers, events, and more.


FEMA Releases Updated "Are You Ready?"

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has announced the release
of the updated, in-depth guide to citizen preparedness, "Are You Ready?".
The guide provides a step-by-step approach to disaster preparedness by
walking the reader through how to get informed about local emergency
plans, how to identify hazards that affect their area, instructing them
on how to develop and maintain an emergency communications plan, and
building a disaster supplies kit. Other topics include evacuation,
emergency public shelters, animals in disaster, and information specific
to people with disabilities.

To broaden the usage of the "Are You Ready?" materials, a facilitator
guide is available for those interested in delivering the disaster
preparedness content in a classroom or small group setting. The
facilitator guide includes training modules for adults and older and
younger children and contains a CD-ROM toolkit that includes
customizable slides and hazard specific fact sheets. The "Are You
Ready?" guide can also be used as a study manual guide with credit
awarded for successful completion and a score of 75 percent or above
on a final exam. College credit for the course is also being offered
through Frederick Community College in Frederick, Maryland.

The updated guide is available from the FEMA Web site in both English
and Spanish. Download a copy at


SAR Dogs Trained to Find Turtles

Yet another interesting use of the scenting ability of dogs.  Of course,
it will not be surprising to any dog handlers.


Brain in a Dish to Fly SAR Missions?

Can SAR pilots be replaced?  One group of researchers is creating a
neural network capable in the future of flying SAR missions.  The neural network
is created by growing rat brain neurons in a special dish and training
it to fly a flight similar.  Currently it can control the basic flight of
a F-22.


Alert and Search Technology Needs to Advance

Following is an interesting and eye opening article about the current
state of searches for abduction cases.  This article should interest both
law enforcement and search teams alike.  It is critical about many large
abduction searches. The need for better training and education is
clearly stated. The website does have a flaw that in order to scroll down
you need to find the black on black scroll button on the right hand side.


DeLorme Magnetic Declination Update

Most DeLorme mapping applications use the National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) magnetic declination file to perform
various functions within the applications. On December 16, 2004, NOAA
released a new version of the file that makes the previous version
(which was released with most DeLorme mapping applications) obsolete.

If you do not install the update on this page, the Find and Route tabs
within your DeLorme mapping software may not function correctly. The
following page provides the update and additional information.


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