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SAR Search and Rescue Calls Have Dropped to Pre-Pandemic Levels

Sidney – The BC Search and Rescue Association (BCSARA) released stats that search and rescue (SAR) callouts have dropped from 2,100 requests for help in 2021 to 1,500 calls in 2022 – showing a definite return to pre-pandemic levels.

Due to its mountainous terrain and unique coastal weather conditions, British Columbia has always received the most search and rescue calls in all of Canada. However, during the height of the pandemic, a surge in even higher call volume challenged our 78 volunteer SAR groups across the province. Despite this, a search and rescue call has never gone unanswered in B.C. in the 20-year history as an organization.

Although the SAR calls in 2022 were down from the record high in 2021, that statistic represents only half of the story as SAR calls are still increasing. Looking to the future, our data forecast shows B.C.’s annual SAR call volume reaching pandemic levels again by 2026 and doubling to 3,000 incidents per year by 2046.

By being accountable for pre-adventure planning and personal preparedness, recreationalists can help slow this concerning trend.

For almost two decades, BCSARA, through its BC AdventureSmart program, has been proactively offering reliable outdoor education, based on data, to the experienced and the unaware, the young and the mature. In addition to reducing the number of calls, a well-prepared recreationalist can also help to reduce the severity of a call which is equally important to the responding SAR group.

SAR Kent Harrison Search And Rescue June 2022

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