Berkshire Lowland Search and Rescue's use of two-way radio

Sam Fenwick joins a Berkshire Lowland Search and Rescue exercise to learn more about how rescue organisations use radio to better coordinate their operations and improve volunteer safety

Emma Brookes was reported missing at 6pm by her mother. Depressed after her exams and with very pushy parents, she doesn’t believe she’s done enough to satisfy them. She’s suffered previous episodes of despondency under similar circumstances and has self-harmed in the past.

Emma doesn’t exist. But for four to five hours Berkshire Lowland Search and Rescue went through a training scenario in which she needs to be found. I was invited by Lowland Rescue to attend the evening’s exercise to learn more about its operations and use of radio.

Part of the reason the training scenario is so detailed is that rescue agencies draw on a vast amount of data on missing persons cases – providing would-be rescuers with valuable information about the likely behaviour of the individual(s). For example, a despondent person like ‘Emma’ is likely to seek out areas of shelter or solace, so the search teams will focus on places of worship and scenic points on higher ground.

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