Top of the Hill|
Boots and Blisters|
Who's Who and New
On the Right Track
Business as Usual|
|Top of the Hill||by Mike Dugger|
Our phone tree is the primary mechanism by which we activate the team for a mission, as well as disseminate information between general meetings. It is critical that the people at the top of the phone tree are diligent in carrying out their duties. Within about 10 minutes of our group page to call voicemail for mission details, our point of contact for the mission is collecting responses from the voice mailbox. By about 20 minutes after the page, the primary contact is back in touch with whoever paged us with a count of resources we are deploying, and those resources are rolling. It is expected that the top of the phone tree will have called their phone list within about 10 minutes of the page. If they do not indicate via voicemail that they are calling their list, the primary contact must make sure it gets done. Since the teams purchases pager airtime for those at the top of the phone tree, we have a right to expect that this job will be done consistently. Of course if the top of the phone tree will be unavailable for a time, they should arrange for someone else to call their list until they can resume that duty. Anyone interested in being at the top of a phone tree should contact me. We are considering restructuring the phone tree to take maximum advantage of the number of pagers now on the team, and we are looking for new people for the top of the phone tree.
Finally, I want to pass along a comment that I heard recently from one of our District 5 Field Coordinators. During a conversation with John Maio last week, he said that he appreciates Cibola SAR for "always being there when we need you." Invoking the customer-supplier model, the FC's are our customers, to whom we supply resources to complete task assignments. There is no better testament to how our customers view our level of response. Thanks John, and thanks to all our members who have helped establish this reputation.
|Boots and Blisters||by Larry Mervine|
|Hike of the Month||Embudito Trail||0800, Oct 25/26, 1997\01997|
|Trailhead: East on Montgomery to Glenwood Hills. North to Trailhead road. East to Open Space parking lot.|
|R.T. Distance: 8 miles||Elevation Min/Max: 6300/8400|
|Hiking Time 4.5 hours||Hazards: The Usual|
|Topo Maps: USFS Map of the Sandias|
|Business as Usual||by John Mindock|
|Mini Lesson||by John Mindock|
Probability of Area (POA)
This is an estimate of the probability that the subject is within a specific area. The total of the POA's of all areas being considered for searching must equal 100%. In order to cover all possibilities, a search segment known as `Rest of the World' (ROW) is also declared. This makes allowance for the situation where he might not be in the areas being considered (home, in the bar, at his girlfriend's, out of the historically-indicated search range, etc.) The POA of an area is estimated by the Incident Management, and an area's POA can change as a result of POD's reported by returning field teams.
As a simplified example, a fisherman is more likely to be near the stream than on top of the hill, so the POA's of areas near the stream would be higher than the ones near the top of the hill. However, after the areas adjoining the stream have been searched to high Unresponsive POD's, their POA's may be lowered and the top of the hill area's POA increased.
In theory, teams assignments correspond to the POA of the areas, with highest POA areas covered first. In reality, Incident Management does not have enough time to chit-chat about POA's in the `initial attack' phase of a mission, so those assignments are made on intuition and history rather than a formal POA strategy. Later assignments might be more explicitly based on POA considerations.
Probability of Coverage (POC)
This is a predetermined set of values for Unresponsive POD, based on the factors that influence POD. It attempts to constrain the incoming POD's from field teams within the realm of reality. A simple illustration: a team of two searchers covering a six-square mile `difficult terrain' area in two hours in snowy nighttime weather should equate to a low POD.
If the team returns with a much higher POD, Incident Management can supersede their POD estimate with that prescribed by the POC tables. Another application of POC would be to tell a team of four people to search an area of four square miles, and do it for six hours. Using the POC tables, this would theoretically ensure that the team got a POD of `y' %, which might be more legally defensible than any subjective estimate the team might provide on their own.
When team members are in the area search mode, they spread out from each other. There are two formal designations for the type of separation - `visual' and `critical'. Visual separation means that the team members generally can see the person on either side of them. Critical separation means that they can generally see some midpoint between them, but do not attempt to stay in visual contact with each other.
Unless Incident Management specifies otherwise, visual separation is the tactic expected of teams in an area search mode. POD for visual separation would usually be larger than that for critical separation.
Terrain Types (easy, moderate, difficult)
One of the factors in POD is the type of terrain. In Hiking Guides, this usually is a function of the steepness and altitude. But in the context of POD, it refers to the difficulty of seeing every place where a person could be concealed. So `easy' terrain might be a grassy field, `moderate' a pinon/juniper foothills area, and `difficult' a canyon filled with downed timber, boulders, etc. But a grassy, albeit steep, slope could also be `easy' in the context of POD.
Rate of Progress
Another factor in POD is rate of progress. Although there are no mandatory guidelines, one could generally expect a hasty team to progress at least two miles per hour, while an area search team should be no faster than one MPH (even less on difficult terrain).
Estimating Responsive POD
There are many subjective factors in estimating responsive POD. The following are some general characteristics that may be used as parameters to devise that estimate.
Low (0 - 25%):
Low (0 - 25%)
High (70 - 90%)
Self-quiz on POD - PART 2
|Who's Who and New||by Bob Ulibarri|
|Coming Attractions||by Tom Russo|
A reminder to contributors: I try to have the newsletter finished by the first of the month to allow me time to format, print and copy the newsletter by the night of the business meeting. It is somewhat difficult to do that if I don't get your articles before the 7th. Too, the preferred method for newsletter submissions is through the web-based submission form. Second choice would be to email your article in plain text to email@example.com. If you are a computational Luddite, you may fax or post your article to the editors. Email directly to the editors' personal addresses is discouraged --- mail to firstname.lastname@example.org is distributed to all editors, whereas if you mail it to one of us then it has to be manually redistributed. Thank you for your support.
|Public Relations||by Chuck Girven|
Being members of Cibola Search and Rescue is like being members of a family. There might be disagreements, but we are still a team with strong bonds. Mary and I have enjoyed the friendships that have developed and the hard work we did getting the web site and monthly newsletter up and running. I've really enjoyed being the Public Relations chairman, starting and maintaining the yearbook to chronicle the history of our team, and being one of the editors of the newsletter.
Cibola has come a long way since I joined a little over two years ago (seems much longer) and Mary started the web site last fall. We've learned a lot through all of the many trainings, missions, and activities. And we've enjoyed ourselves so much that we'd like to encourage other members (new and old) to get involved beyond the basic trainings and missions by running for office, recruiting and mentoring new members, or helping out on one or more of the various committees. Mary and I are very proud to have been active members of Cibola SAR. Thank you for your friendship and support through the good times and especially through the few bad ones. It's through these that we grow as human beings. We hope to see you again in a few years.
|On the Right Track||by Mary Berry|
The K-9 unit meets regularly to train informally together on Wednesday nights. These trainings vary a lot in their content, anywhere from obedience and socialization training, to short search problems. On October 1, we did something new by trying table-top search scenarios. This made us develop search strategies which, of course, always ended up changing. It was a good way to make us think. Typically on weekends we also train together and usually do more involved and difficult search problems. Anyone interested is welcome to attend, just please talk to me, Mickey Jojola, or David Mahoney.
On September 20th, a joint training was held with the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Posse (mounted SAR). A helicopter was brought in, despite the rain, and the horses and dogs got a good opportunity to be exposed to the sights, sounds, and downwash. A lecture was also given on booby traps typically found in mountainous areas where marijuana fields are grown. A mock search was scheduled for the 21st, but it was pre-empted by a real search near Bernardo.
The next scheduled Mission-Ready Evaluation is for me and "JC" on October 19th. Anyone interested in helping out should contact Mickey. Thanks.
|Member Spotlight: Tom Rice|
When I was six my father retired from the Air Force and we moved to Hershey, Pennsylvania, where he was born and raised with his 8 brothers and sisters. My father taught history at the local high school and was a tennis pro in the summer. My mother worked at the same high school as the home economics teacher. After seven years of teaching high school my father gave up that profession to continue teaching tennis all year around, indoors in the winter, outdoors in the summer.
Having a father who did nothing but live and breathe tennis, I naturally picked up a thing or two along the way. I started playing tennis at age seven and hockey at eight. Hershey is a big hockey town with their own AHL hockey team and was the farm club for the Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins, at different times of course. So I played hockey because all my friends played. The All Star team I was on in 1976 won the International Tournament in Quebec, Canada and we placed 8th at the U.S. National Tournament. I played tennis during all my years of hockey, sometimes having hockey practice in the mornings before school and tennis after school. My tennis career really took off at age sixteen. I played in so many tournaments that I can't even count them. When I was seventeen I qualified for a national tournament where I lost in the round of 16. My senior year I was even captain of the soccer team. I suck at soccer and so did our team, it was the first year our high school had a team, so the first guy who could kick a ball was named the captain. This is fun bragging about all the stuff you did as a kid, my head is getting bigger just remembering all this!!
The reason I came to New Mexico was due to a tennis scholarship at New Mexico State University. I played for NMSU for two years and was close to flunking out of school! It was time to make a decision! I quit tennis for good and started using all that extra time to study and work to pay the bills. I did extremely well over the next couple of years and landed a two year degree in just four "short" years, in Mechanical Engineering Technology. During that time I was president of Theta Chi Fraternity where I had to deal with all the "BS" that goes with any large organization. Very similar to the thankless job that Mike is doing for Cibola.
Sandia National Laboratories hired me to work as a designer and continue my education at the wonderful home of the Lobos. This is were I met Bob Ulibarri and became friends. I actually lived with the guy, can you believe that? While attending UNM the engineering college only accepted 27 out of the 96 credits that were obtained at NMSU, which meant years of night school. After three years of working full time and occasionally attending night classes, I took an educational leave of absence from Sandia to finish my BS degree at NMSU. It took only a year and a half to finish and return to Sandia. While at NMSU I met my best friend Karen. I had to pay her, but we finally got married in August of 1991.
I left Sandia in June of 1996 to start a business called Sunwest CAD. Basically what I do in the state of New Mexico and El Paso is sell solid modeling (CAD) software, as well as analysis, simulation and animation software. I also provide technical support and training classes. This new life has kept me very busy and unfortunately away from many SAR activities.
Bob Ulibarri and I became interested in Urban SAR after attending some dog training classes held by Jim Calahan. During this time we heard a great deal about Cibola SAR from Jim, Bruce, Mary and Norman so we gave it a try. I quit Urban SAR after joining Cibola. This was a good thing since shortly after quitting my dog Derby started showing signs of Progressive Retinal Atrophy which basically means she was going blind. She is totally blind now, which was my sign to stay out of the SAR dog business.
I have enjoyed close to four years as a member of Cibola SAR. This team has grown in many ways during that time. I want to thank all those who have devoted a good portion of their lives in making this happen. Without this dedication I don't Cibola SAR would be where they are today!
|Web News||by Tom Russo|
Some Webmaster with more dollars than sense bought himself a flatbed scanner this month, so we do have the capability of adding more pictures to the team web site; we've plenty more disk space available out of the chunk that Southwest Cyberport allocated for us. If you have pictures of events or people that would be appropriate for display on the web, please get in touch with me. Note that I will not put any pictures of individuals on the web site without their permission, so if the picture you give me is not of your own face get permission from the subject of the photo first.
|NMESC Notes||by The Wayside|
|Out-Of-State Missions||by John Mindock|
The following aspects apply to missions where we are called out-of-state. This call may come via the NM State SAR office, but such is considered to solely be a courtesy from that office, and does not imply that the State of NM is involved in the mission. The most important concept is: whereas the responsibility for SAR in New Mexico lies with the State Police, such is not the case in neighboring states. In general, the County Sheriff is responsible, but sometimes other agencies such as the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, United States Forest Service, etc. may handle SAR in their landholdings. Consequently, we are not covered by any New Mexico laws (particularly the liability laws). Instead, we are covered by those of the agency which called for us, and/or perhaps their state laws (depending on the legal set-up). Likewise, we are not insured by New Mexico for injury during the mission or while traveling. In this case, we probably are covered under the insurance of the agency who called us. We are not reimbursed for gas by the State of New Mexico, but the calling agency may allow for that.
We will most likely be under the direction of the local agency. The local agency may ask an NM Field Coordinator to assist them, in the mode known as `unified command' under ICS. In that case, the FC's position will be subordinate to the local agency's Incident Commander. Don't assume that the ICS system will be used - each agency may use whatever system they have adopted.
For missions that start within New Mexico but end up in neighboring states, we usually are covered under the NM mission rules. Generally speaking, the coverage situation would depend on decisions made at the time by NM Incident Management and the New Mexico SAR Resource Office. The key indicator: if the incident is being handled under a NM mission number, we are covered as per all missions. Otherwise, we are not. Just FYI, it's common for some eastern Arizona teams to deploy on western New Mexico missions. But most of these teams have been formally `recognized' by the NM SAR Review Board, so are viewed in the same category as any recognized NM team.
We have never been called for an out-of-state mission, but it's not uncommon for teams near our borders. Liability questions will need to be determined at the time of such a call.
Thanks to Rick Goodman (NM SAR Resource Officer) and Bob Lathrop (FC, Roswell) for information used in this article.
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