SAR Teams Simulate Rescue for Hours
MESA COUNTY, Colo. Because no two rescue missions are identical, Mesa County Search and Rescue crews must be prepared to trek on uncharted territory. On Saturday, SAR teams came together for a critical training mission. Robert Beltz, who's on the SAR ATV team, said, "Open fracture of the fibula, there was a closed fracture of a femur." Christopher Kadel, a SAR ground team member, said, "We're dealing with a fairly high number of fairly well-injured people, you could say, with pretty traumatic injuries." Tanya Baber, a SAR volunteer, said, "We're simulating a plane crash, so that means we have to work with multiple patients and we also had a couple of people wander away from the plane crash." While crews worked tirelessly to find each victim, the mission took time. "Well generally in most rescues the most challenging part is the carryout," Kadel said. "I play the victim of a plane crash, that's taking blood thinners and bleeding out," said victim volunteer Geneva Smith. "We're making it more complex than we would normally encounter, that way it just makes our skills better," Baber said. Getting victims to safety is the ultimate achievement "It's what we enjoy doing as volunteers. We invest hundreds of hours a year because it's something true and dear to our hearts," Baber said. So while the scenario was scripted, the rescuers were the real deal. Rescuers say that another big challenge on missions is when people split up. Officials say calling 911 helps authorities locate victim's exact coordinates and it's best to not move.