Originally Posted by Healer52
Was that the rescue
where the AF Reserve Rescue
Helo crashed into the mountain?
But there you go. The cost of that rescue effort included career-ending injuries to the crew, the replacement of a $15 million or so helo, and it's removal
from the mountain.
That is another good example, but I was thinking of the 2006 SAR on Mt Hood
when the 3 guys got lost
on a winter attemp. Air Force PJ's along with volunteer Mt Rescue guys recovered one body. The other two are still missing. Most people don't realize that outside of the big parks, Mountain Rescue in the western US is largely handled by volunteer groups and County Sheriff's departments. (In Alaska
we don't have counties, so it's volunteers and the State Troopers.) This can put a huge burden on local resources. I don't remember the exact numbers, but that one search cost Hood
River County many times their annual SAR budget
in overtime for Sheriff personel etc. That doesn't even include all the costs to volunteer folks.
To me a big problem is always the public uproar after these things. There are always calls for more rules, restrictions, etc. I think one of the things that attract many of us to the sea (and mountains) is the sense of freedom we get. Big, high profile rescues, especially when the people being recued appear to have done something really dumb, will have repercussions for all of us. I don't know what the complete answer to all this is, but a few things that might help come to mind:
Some sort of rescue fund, perhaps part of vessel registration/documentation fees
(state or federal) to help cover costs might be in order. This is already being done to some extent in the mountaineering world.
Healer pointed out the usefulness of education. If you belong to a yacht club, push to get presentations by coast guard or whomever about how to stay out of trouble. If you are very experienced, perhaps you can give presentations based on your own experiences. If you see somebody being dumb, gently try to educate them (not always easy, I know).
Participate to the extent you are able in volunteer rescue organizations. Here in Alaska
, the Coast Guard is spread very thin over a vast area. In Prince William Sound, the Coast Guard Auxillary now provides a good share of the actual on scene rescue service
(the Coast Guard has given them some highly capable boats). I'm getting a bit old to charge up mountains, but I still participate to the extent that I'm able in a volunteer wilderness SAR group.
Finally, try to make sure you don't become the target of a rescue. Learn how to be self sufficient. There is a fine line between doing a challenging trip, and being stupid. Have fun but try to stay on the correct side of that line.