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* Search and Rescue Canada - Introduction
* FEMA to Retain Name/Identity
* Sweep Width Report - Objective POD Estimation
* Phone In for a Complimentary NASAR Renewal on 8/29/03
* NASAR Black Tie Gala Postponed
* Vote for your NASAR Board Members Online!
* SAR Computer Updates
* RescueRigger - Construct Rope Rescue Systems on Your PC
* Search Planning Interface
* SAR Team Online
* Virginia Search Management Software Project
* IMan - Incident Management
* Bayesian Models for Search and Rescue -- Australia
* Rounds Search Calculator
* Search Manager
* Maritime SAR Software

 Online version at www.SARNEWS.com 8/28/03
Search and Rescue Canada - Introduction

"On September 13, at the SARSCENE 2002 Conference in Halifax, a national
Search and Rescue (SAR) organization was formed called "Search and
Rescue Canada" (SARCAN). SARCAN will be a single tier organization with
member representation from individuals, agencies and organizations
across Canada that provide SAR services and/or support SAR services.

The purpose of SARCAN is to provide a national framework that will
provide improved information sharing, education and cooperation between
SAR personnel, researchers and organizations across our nation. SARCAN's
purpose will enhance the efficiency of search and rescue, so others may


FEMA to Retain Name/Identity

In a decision announced to agency staff Aug. 4, Secretary of
Homeland Security Tom Ridge has chosen to allow the Federal
Emergency Management Agency to retain its name and acronym FEMA
to identify them within the department. The FEMA acronym will be
used on all letterhead, business cards, signs and other products
in conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
seal. FEMA joined 22 other federal agencies, programs and
offices in March 2003 to form the new department. DHS brings a
coordinated approach to national security from emergencies and
disasters natural or manmade. Today, FEMA is one of four major
branches of DHS.


Sweep Width Report - Objective POD Estimation

A report on the first phase of a project to develop practical yet
scientific procedures for estimating the effective sweep widths
("detectability indices (indexes)") for search objects under operational
conditions has been posted.  The report's title is "A Method for
Determining Effective Sweep Widths for Land Searches: Procedures for
Conducting Detection Experiments."  A companion Microsoft® Power Point®
2002 presentation has also been posted under the title "Objective POD
Estimation". This is the first time a true land paper has been posted
 on the National Search and Rescue Committee web site. 


Phone In for a Complimentary NASAR Renewal on 8/29/03

Complimentary 1-year NASAR membership renewals will be given to the
first ten current individual members to call NASAR Headquarters after
8:00a.m. on August 29th. The NASAR toll free number is 888-893-7788.
NASAR looks forward to hearing from you!


NASAR Black Tie Gala Postponed

The black tie gala, originally planned for September 11, 2003 has been
rescheduled for September 11, 2004. All plans remain the same, only the
date has changed.

Questions can be directed to Executive Director, Jacki Golike.


Vote for your NASAR Board Members Online!

If you are a NASAR member you can now vote for the NASAR Board members
online.  Visit the web site and take a few moments to read the bios
for each of the Board candidates. The three successful gentlemen will
join six other Board members in leading the organization for the next
three years.

Email addresses are provided so that you can ask each candidate
questions, and get a better "feel" for their philosophies, etc.


SAR Computer Updates

During recent travels around the globe several different computer-based
SAR projects came to our attention.  A lot is happening rather quickly
in the realm of using computers in a truly meaningful way for SAR.  Some
of these software programs are currently available while others are in
development. Presented in no particular order, all are worth a look.
Up-to-date discussion on much of the software can be found online at:

RescueRigger - Construct rope rescue systems on your PC

RescueRigger lets you create rope rescue systems on your PC.  Whether
you work in mountain, swiftwater or urban rescue, RescueRigger will
help you design your rescue system.

Are your rope rescue skills getting a little rusty?  Use RescueRigger to
practice setting up that "Z" rig.  RescueRigger is a great way to learn
or practice setting up systems. 

Seasoned professionals and rescue instructors use RescueRigger to design
and teach rescue rigging to others.  When combined with an overhead
projector, you can use RescueRigger to quickly demonstrate multiple
rigging techniques.  If you teach you can use this product.


Search Planning Interface

This GIS-based search management planning tool and operational tracking
software is still in Beta.  Developed in South Africa it follows terms
and practices that are common in the current SAR literature.


SAR Team Online

This open source software system is designated to help track team member
ship and maintain operational data.  Used in Canada, it currently has
data for the provinces' 600 GSAR volunteers and 100 search reports.

Virginia Search Management Software Project

Another SAR software program based upon GIS is being developed. 
The page gives several slides on how the current software looks. Efforts
are underway to make it a capstone project that would allow University
students to work on the project.


IMan - Incident Management

From New Zealand comes another important tool for search management - a
database to keep track of all the information and data from a search.
The database is called IMan (Incident Management). Although it does
have a way to go in terms of adding reports and miscellaneous features,
it is ready for deployment.  Its real strength is in the Log section,
which is really an Information Management engine.  Feel free to
download it in trial form:


Bayesian Models for Search and Rescue -- Australia

The Sarbayes.org set of projects is perhaps the most comprehensive site
for data, search theory, and software development - a little academic,
correct in its use of SAR theory, and properly guided by those who
actually run SAR missions.  Several software projects can be downloaded
from the download section of the website.  Keep a close eye on this
site.  Development is underway to make a comprehensive GIS-based SAR
package that would be a powerful SAR planning tool as well as keep
track of operational details.


Rounds Search Calculator

It would be nice if probability of area (POA/POC) and theoretical areas
could be calculated on a map using both behavioral research and actual
terrain analysis.  The US military can do it, so why not SAR?  The
website gives a detailed look at a software project that can do just


Search Manager

Search Manager is most likely the most advanced and current software
available right now.  It is able to be networked and has been used on
several large searches.  The current version is not GIS-based, but
development on the GIS interface is in the works.  Full of planning
tools, it also manages team databases.



Perhaps one of the earliest and still used SAR software is CASIE.  Still
DOS-based, it is fast and easy to use with today's computers.  While
most useful for SAR planning, it does not have a GIS interface.  CASIE
is the brainchild of David Lovelock, M.J. Ebersole and the late John
Bownds. Dr. Lovelock, of the University of Arizona, was the principal
programmer of the software in the C-language. The program was designed
to simplify most of the calculations related to managing a search
emergency using modern search theory. CASIE also introduced innovative
applications, such as Resource Optimization and quantification of the
Influence of Clues, as part of a comprehensive package of SAR analysis


Maritime SAR Software

A lot can be learned from looking at slightly different areas of SAR.
Maritime SAR has used computers for quite some time.  Here is a list of
websites that provide information on some of the Maritime software




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