1,019 lives saved in 2022: Year in review for search and rescue in British Columbia

For the first time in its 20-year history, British Columbia Search and Rescue (BCSARA) is releasing an annual report on its operations and the numbers are revealing.

The report states that more than 1,700 people were rescued and 1,019 lives were saved (who would not have survived through a search and rescue response, according to BCSARA).

More than 3,400 volunteers, armed with 78 helicopters, spent more than 440,000 hours on duty in 2022. This equates to 18,333 24-hour days worked.

“We always knew our highly trained volunteer ground search and rescue groups did incredible work, but seeing it documented, in one place, really makes us realize just how much they do,” said Dwight Yochim, BCSARA .

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“I think British Columbia can be very proud of the services these volunteers provide and the difference they make every day. My sincere thanks to the 78 groups and their more than 3,400 volunteers whose dedication embodies the SAR maxim: “So that others may live.”

Volunteers from across the province worked hard and responded to 1,510 incidents.

This includes Comox Valley volunteers, who spend their weekends completing their CPR training.

“What really amazes me when reading the annual report is…saving a life is an incredible opportunity and a gift…it’s a reason to be here and spend hundreds of hours (with BCSARA)” , said Randy Chatterjee, a researcher and researcher in the Comox Valley. Member of the rescue team.

“When search and rescue operations in British Columbia save a thousand lives a year… it gives me a huge sense of the importance of this organization. »

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BCSARA previously said there was an increase in the number of operations following the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the province.

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