2013 SAR Academy


Do you love hiking and recreating in the backcountry of Kodiak Island? Do you have a desire to come to the aid of local community members in distress?

During the 2012 Christmas search KISAR had over one hundred volunteers, but many of them, while sincere in their desire to help, were untrained and underequipped for the task.

This October KISAR will be hosting a SARTECH II course. This course will give you the basic information needed to function in a non-technical backcountry search. Those who successfully complete this training will receive national certification and immediately qualify for Operational status and respond to KISAR searches.

The current plan for this 40 hour course is; Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday evenings and all day Saturday and Sunday October 14 – 20.

Here’s the material that will be covered:

SARTECH II Examination

The SARTECH II level of certification is the intermediate level for SAR personnel. This level is recommended for any person who functions on SAR missions as field searchers

There are no prerequisites required for a person to challenge the SARTECH II examination.  Certification history does indicate persons who have had formal SAR training and experience on SAR missions successfully pass the examinations more frequently than others do.

The SARTECH II examination consists of a written exam and a practical exam.  The written exam includes one hundred and forty-five (145) questions covering the candidate’s knowledge of search and rescue.  A passing grade is 70 % or above.  Successfully passing the SARTECH II written test assures the candidate to be certified at the SARTECH III level whether the practical exam is passed or not.

Upon passing the written exam, the candidate is then required to successfully complete a six station practical exam

The written exam includes questions from the following topics:

  • NIMS Incident Command System
  • Basic Survival
  • SAR Clothing
  • Improvising
  • Environmental Hazards and First Aid
  • SAR Ready Pack
  • Personal Equipment
  • Travel Skills
  • Land Navigation & Orienteering
  • SAR Resources
  • Search Philosophy
  • Search Tactics
  • Handling Evidence
  • Clue Consciousness
  • Search Operations
  • Tracking
  • Ropes & Rescue Equipment
  • Legal Aspects for the Searcher

  The candidate’s performance of SAR skills is evaluated at six practical exam stations involving:

  • Station #1: Land Navigation: Use of topographic maps and compass.  Candidates complete a course over terrain commonly encountered in the operations area in a specified time frame, not to exceed 600 meters.
  • Station #2: Tracking: Candidates identify and mark a footprint track left by the evaluator and follow the track to its end.
  • Station #3: 24-hour Pack: Candidates demonstrate the ability to possess and pack the required SAR equipment and supplies efficiently.
  • Station #4: Rope Skills: Candidates demonstrate the ability to tie four basic knots and a harness with supplied rope and webbing.
  • Station #5: Route Search: This station entails locating and labeling clues in a given area demonstrating the ability to detect 50% of the clues using a route search tactic.
  • Station #6: Area Search: This station entails locating and labeling clues in a given area demonstrating the ability to detect 50% of the clues using an area search tactic.

If you have wanted to become involved in the local SAR community, and didn’t know how, now is the perfect time. For more information you can email a KISAR member at kisar1986@gmail.com.

About kisar1986

Kodiak Island Search & Rescue (KISAR) is a non-profit organization whose objectives are exclusively charitable, scientific or educational. Specifically, our purposes are: To furnish highly trained volunteers and dog teams for search and rescue for the benefit and welfare of the community To organize and support the continuing education and training of volunteers, dog teams and support personnel in accepted search and rescue methods. To increase public awareness of search and rescue trained volunteers and dog teams and provide informational and educational programs and demonstrations to institutions, agencies and community organizations.
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