Volume 8, Issue 3
13 March 2003
and Tom Russo
"That Others May Live..."
Wow, it's March already and lots of things are going on. The P.R. comittiee is
looking into orange shirts (T-shirts and button up's). Training is off to a
good start with search techniques, winter skills, and litter handling already
completed. With all this going on, don't forget that its time to start
thinking about ESCAPE, because it will be here soon. ESCAPE is the annual New
Mexico Search and Rescue conference sponsored by NMESC. It will be held this
year at Philmont Scout Ranch on the first weekend in May. At that time we will
have an opportunity to vote on changes to NMESC's bylaws. If you want to
review the changes they can be found online at: http://www.nmesc.org.
|Top of the Hill
||by Aaron Hall, President
As most of you know, I want to build a better relationship between Cibola and
AMRC. Our two teams are the among the largest and most active teams in the
state, and I think that its unfortunate that we don't work together more,
especially out of the field when we can get to know each other. So, the other
day I invited Kevin Silver (AMRC president) to have a burger with me and chew
the fat about Cibola and AMRC. I found out that Kevin would also like to see
our teams have a better realtionship. We brainstormed for a while and came up
with some ideas that could help build that relationship. Here's a short list
I don't know if we will ever see these ideas implemented, but I want all of
you to hear them. We work in the field with members of AMRC on almost every
mission that we go on. Fundamentally they are in the field for the same
reasons that we are in the field. I think that if we can build a better
relationship with them, we can work more effectively with them in the
field. As always, I welcome your ideas and thoughts on this.
- Send someone to each other's meetings periodically to make announcements.
- Attend eachother's trainings on occasion.
- Meet together for a joint debrief after a particluarly difficult mission.
- Work to form a central New Mexico training group that includes teams like
St. Johns, Search Dogs, and SAR support.
- Plan some joint trainings for specialty subjects like first aid and
- Refer prospectives who are interested in high angle / groundpounding to
each other's teams when appropriate.
See you out there...
March already. I want to thank everyone who has helped me execute our
training program. This month Larry Mervine did a great job with this
month's litter training. He added a couple of twists to the process
that resulted in a very realistic training opportunity. Tom Russo did a
great job making David Chapek look really hurt and David did a great job
of looking hurt. I am sure that the medical element of our team
appreciated the opportunity to work their trade. Thanks to all for
providing that superb training opportunity. Also, I am looking forward
to Tony's night navigation training this month. We operate at night, we
should be able to navigate at night. Thanks for that Tony. We have
lots of opportunity for each of you to participate in our training
program as a trainer vice trainee. The April training is open. Anyone want to
do the search training on 5 April? How about the pre-meeting training?
The April optional training is totally open (I am thinking of doing a
geo caching event in the Sandias). Please let me know if you wish to
run a training event. Remember it is OUR training program. Thanks in
advance for your help.
|Boots and Blisters
||by Steven Buckley, Training Officer
This month I want to focus on something that I have been wanting to fix
for a while...our training/evaluation standards. I think that our core
training and evaluation process is generally sound. We focus on our
core competencies, search and litter pretty well. The land navigation
training and evaluation standard is the one I want to focus on. While
the litter and search programs focus directly on mission functions, you
must take a hard look at the land navigation program to see how it
applies directly to mission events. In the litter and search programs
we must demonstrate a capability by doing a litter evacuation or area
search exactly the same way we would if tasked with one of those
missions by the IC. The land navigation standard forces us to
demonstrate three things. The first is that we can work a compass and
accurately follow a bearing. The second is that we can work a pace
count to estimate broken-ground distance. The third is that we can work
a compass and map to find a location via resection. For the record, I
think all of these skills are valuable but they don't really relate well
to land navigation skills required on a typical mission. Typically, we
report our position when required using a GPS and a radio. We don't
follow up and translate those coordinates to a map and then take a look
at the map and make mission specific decisions (go high, go low, go
left, etc.) from that knowledge. We also will probably never use
resection to provide team location to the IC either.
One basic requirement for any training program is to "train like you
will operate". With this thought in mind, I would like to take another
look at our land navigation training standard. Keep the "orienteering"
course part of the standard. Working a compass well is a good skill
that works even when the GPS batteries die out. Broken-country
navigation with a pack is also good exercise and practice for missions.
What I would like to do is recognize that the other land navigation
skills that are useful on a mission is position determination (What are
my coordinates?), correlation of those coordinates to a map (What is
around me?), and terrain recognition (...lost my compass, got my
map...where am I?) I would like to see our land navigation
training/evaluation standard reflect these basic skills. Here is the
way a land navigation evaluation would go if I had my way:
- Walk my course and report the distance between each leg (no change).
- Identify three terrain features on a map and point them out to the
- Orient your map to the terrain using only terrain features.
- Locate your position and provide me with the coordinates. (pick one
- Use a compass, map, pencil, and protractor and resection to
within +/- 300 meters.
- Use a GPS and get your coordinates to within +/- 100 meters.
- Point to your location on a map to within the appropriate standard.
Of course, we are a team here so we need to discuss all this and figure
out what we want to do. Please mail me with comments. "Train like you
operate...operate like you train!"
|Business as Usual:Meeting Minutes
||by Lili Ziesmann, for Joyce Rumschlag, Secretary
Minutes of the February 13th, 2003 Business Meeting
Pre-meeting not-so-mini-lesson started at 5:30 and consisted of Continuing
Education video tapes for WFRs or anyone else interested in learning more
about medical support.
Aaron Hall started the meeting at 1915. We started with brief instructions
for participation in mission
033001 to search for shuttle debris. Members were asked to keep the mission
confidential and to avoid
discussions with the media. The Winter Bivy originally planned for Saturday,
was rescheduled to Feb 22nd
to allow for maximum participation in the mission.
Aaron announced that NMESC is planning more activities this year, such as the
Medical Assistance by
Radio training. They are also developing statewide search procedure standards, such as the winter skills
committee Steve Buckley is participating on. Check the list serve or their web site to get dates:
Steve Buckley asked if anyone is interested in offering classes for Escape at Philmont Ranch in May. David Dixon, Tom Russo, David Chapek and Alex Fisher volunteered to help plan a mock search for Escape. The group discussed the possibility of offering new members the opportunity of becoming WFR certified since its been a couple of years since the last group was trained and some of those folks are no longer on the team. Also discussion included adding a medical component to ground pounding, such as how to pack a litter containing an injured subject.
Lili Ziesmann reported the total income and expenditures for the month.
A budget was presented that included some new equipment for this year: a new
litter and wheel, 2 pairs of snowshoes and poles, and an increase in the PR
It was approved by a majority vote of 15 to 0.
David Chapek reported that we followed up on several new leads for
prospects. Volunteers were requested to help format the member guide so it
can be distributed on CD ROM for a much lower cost than making paper
copies. Alex Fisher agreed to help.
Also, a reminder that the PACE exam would be given on February 22nd.
Tony Gaier reported that he no longer keeps all supplies in his truck, so if
you need something besides batteries call him before the meeting so he can
bring whatever you need. 4 AA Lithium batteries will be distributed per year
to active members. If not all members claim them or if we find they are very
popular and used regularly, more may be made available after six months.
Art Jarvis has a radio he wishes to sell. It was examined by members at the
meeting. Tony is holding it so contact him if you are interested in
Tony also said that this year webbing for the litter would be replaced for
the primary litter. Also there are two fully capable team radios available
for check out.
Mike Dugger reported that we are recruiting for more medically trained staff,
both from outside our team, and encouraging current members to become WFR
certified. UNM offers a 10 day block of courses, and
there are others organizations that offer them, but Mike cautioned to talk to
him before paying for any First Responder course to be sure it is recognized
by the State EMS board. He is planning a WFR refresher course in the fall,
but we need to guarantee at least 10 attendees for the course to be
offered. The EMS Region 3 conference is coming up April 21-27 in Ruidoso, NM,
annual statewide EMS conference is July 28th-August 2nd in Albuquerque.
David Dixon reported that their goal, aligned with the Membership officer, is
to support a 50% increase in members. He brought various posters and
brochures asking the group to look at them and submit ideas for updating them
and also great ways and locations to distribute them. He asked for any
volunteers to help with community service presentations talking to kids in
public schools. The committee this month also discussed getting grants,
getting discounts from vendors or donated equipment, and fund raising
ideas. PR meetings are held the last Wednesday of every month at the Frontier
Restaurant at 6:30, all are welcome to attend.
The group also discussed the issue of recognizable "teamwear". Michael
Hines offered to get samples of t-shirts, vests or other options. A motion
was passed to reimburse him up to $50 if it was necessary to pay for
samples. The vote was 16 in favor, 0 opposed.
Also, Alex Fisher is working to get a pro-sales account for discounts from
No new business was reported.
Last month I outlined P.R. goals for the year. The committee would like
to focus first on recruitment. The ways we will succeed in our
membership goal is to reach out to those that are most interested in us.
We'll be placing our membership pamphlets and posters at appropriate
businesses, government, private, and other local outdoor locations,
attending and setting up our booth at functions, and arranging speaking
engagements specifically for recruitment. If you know of something that
would fit these criteria let me know. If you are interested in helping
in this endeavor come to the next meeting.
||by David Dixon
Last month's committee meeting was lively and productive. I think we are
finally getting close to some orange clothing choices, we started
fulfilling some of our recruiting goals and there was lots of the usual
general bull. The next meeting will be on April 26, 6:30 p.m., Frontier
Restaurant. (We're skipping March). Show up and become an instant
As I mentioned in my last article, the EMS Region III conference is coming up
April 21-27 in Ruidoso. I have browsed the conference program and identified
BLS CE courses our medical providers can use to meet continuing education
requirements. The conference consists of workshops Monday through Thursday,
and then shorter CE courses during the "core conference" on Friday through
Sunday. Registration for the core conference is $110 before April 15. Single
day registration is $75. On Friday there are 6 hours of BLS medical CEs on
topics such as lightning injuries, siezures, burns and suicide attempts. On
Saturday one can also obtain 6 hours BLS medical CEs on topics such as trauma
and OB/GYN. Sunday has just 3 hours BLS CEs on poisons and obesity. Remember
that WFRs require 8 hours BLS medical CEs during each certification period to
remain certified. If you were to attend this conference for just one day,
Friday April 25 would be the best in my opinion, in terms of BLS CE hours and
content relevant to our missions.
||by Mike Dugger, Continuing Education Coordinator
During the past month I have also established a new Medical Direction and
Protocol agreement with our Medical Director, Kevin Nufer. This is the
agreement by which Kevin provides us with the medical guidance we require to
help subjects during SAR missions under state law. Our new agreement is in
effect until the end of calendar year 2004.
I am still seeking a replacement newsletter editor. I find I am no longer
able to give my editing duties the time they require, and will be stepping
aside as newsletter editor soon. I'll give at least a few months notice
before I actually decide when I'll stop doing this, but my decision
is getting close. If someone would like to start getting used to being "it"
then I'd accept help
now and step aside as soon as that person became comfortable with the
job. You know how to reach me if you're interested.
The team website can be accessed at http://www.cibolasar.org/
The contents of this newsletter are copyright © 2003 by their respective
authors or by Cibola Search and Rescue, Inc., and individual articles
represent the opinions of the author. Cibola SAR makes no representation,
express or implied, with regard to the accuracy of the information
contained in these articles, and cannot accept any legal responsibility or
liability for any errors or omissions that may be made. Articles contained
in this newsletter may be reproduced, with attribution given to Cibola SAR
and the author, by any member of the Search and Rescue community for use in
other team's publications.
|Disclaimer and Copyright notice