BSAR assists Thames Valley Police with typically over 20 searches per year. All volunteers receive training in basic search techniques. Past incidents include searching for Alzheimer’s disease sufferers and missing children.
We can field a team of as many as 20 trained searchers in around an hour, using a rapid SMS service. Because of their level of training our volunteers can be deployed within minutes of arriving on scene.
Although police can provide a very rapid response when a vulnerable person goes missing, their numbers will be limited for many hours because of continuing commitments elsewhere. Many of you will have seen large number of members of the public, or the army, involved in high-profile searches, but these operations take days to organise.
BSAR usually run their own control vehicle which provides radio communications, a mobile office, and a store for specialised equipment. BSAR usually work under the direction of a police search adviser (POLSA), but also have qualified Search Controllers who can allocate search areas and interview relatives if requested by the police.
Searches may last for many hours and can start at any time of the day or night.