Penticton Search and Rescue had a busy year in 2019, clocking over 7,500 hours of volunteer time. (File photo)

A year in review: Penticton Search and Rescue looks back on a busy 2019

In 2019 PENSAR recorded 7,500 hours of volunteer time, more callouts than in previous years

In 2019 Penticton Search and Rescue’s (PENSAR) 37 active members contributed over 7,500 volunteer hours serving the community.

According to the organization’s year-end report, this is more than normal thanks in large part to being called out to more tasks than in previous years.

In the past year, the organization has responded to 46 calls for service from BC Ambulance, RCMP and mutual response requests from other search and rescue groups in the region.

Read more: Penticton Search and Rescue called out to injured mountain biker

Read more: Injured hiker rescued from Skaha Bluffs

The majority of PENSAR’s calls in 2019 involved mountain bikers or climbers seeking medical evacuation. These were came from areas such as Campbell Mountain, the Three Blind Mice biking system, and Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park.

PENSAR president Randy Brown explained that their helicopter long line rescue team was utilized ten times to assist with the evacuation of injured individuals in the backcountry.

Read more: Emergency crews rescue injured mountain biker from Campbell Mountain

Read more: Emergency crews rescue a second injured mountain biker from Campbell Mountain

Brown said his organization is keenly aware of volunteer burnout and that increasing their numbers with dedicated personnel is always on their minds.

That being said, PENSAR increased its roster by 18 members following a successful fall recruitment campaign. Following a 70-hour ground search and rescue training in January these new members will be able to hit the ground in May when call volumes begin to increase.

In preparation for spring, PENSAR encouraged all trail users and backcountry enthusiasts to utilize phone apps such as Trailforks or the Adventure Smart trip planner.

“These simple little tools can save your life and help us get to you quicker,” said Brown.

The organization wished the entire community of Penticton and District a Merry Christmas, and happy trails in 2020.

Continue reading: Penticton Search and Rescue locate missing man


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: SD67 approves budget reductions

Staff positions will be cut to balance budget

COVID-19: Pre-recorded graduation events planned for students in School District 67

Graduates from Penticton Secondary have created petition to urge postponement of grad ceremonies

COVID-19: SD67 plans restart program for Penticton, Summerland students

District following provincial guidelines as students return to classrooms on June 1

Petition seeks to clean up Okanagan forests ‘carpeted’ with shotgun shells

Penticton man says making shot-gun shells refundable would create cleaner forests

Eco-friendly bus service seeks to add Kelowna to Osoyoos route

Bus would stop in Kelowna, West Kelowna, Peachland, Summerland, Penticton, Kaledan, Oliver, Osoyoos

Video: Okanagan mayors encourage water conservation this summer

Water conservation this summer could be more important than ever, experts say

Enderby’s drive-in not safe from top doc’s 50-car limit

Starlight Drive-In opened with reduced capacity, COVID-19 safety measures in place

Parking lot patios a go in Vernon

Council votes in favour of allowing businesses to expand commercial space into on-street parking spots

Shuswap cabin owner disputes request to stay home in Alberta

Alberta resident redrafts response to CSRD request to stay home

Kelowna’s main drag will be closed to vehicles this summer

Kelowna’s Bernard Avenue will be a pedestrian-only roadway from June 29 through the Labour Day long weekend

Vernon gym knocked out by COVID-19

9Round Fitness in Vernon Square Mall owners announce permanent closure of facility

Snapshot: Distanced dancing in Salmon Arm

Friends use picnic shelter at Blackburn Park for safe practice

Kelowna’s Homebase Baseball Tournament cancelled

A live auction will still take place to raise funds for Joeanna’s House

Kelowna General Hospital Foundation launches fundraising initiative to support local health care

The initiative also highlights workers at Kelowna General Hospital

Most Read