Arrowsmith Search and Rescue still took part in the Qualicum Beach Family Day Parade after a busy weekend

Hikers keep Arrowsmith Search and Rescue busy

On Sunday morning searchers were called out to look for an intoxicated woman

It may have been a record busy weekend for Arrowsmith Search and Rescue, with three searches on top of their practice and parade plans.

“After a search Saturday, Sunday morning we had a general practice scheduled from

9 to 11, then we were going to clean up and get ready for the Family Day Parade at noon,” said ASR search manager Gordon Yelland.

“Saturday afternoon we were called out by B.C. Ambulance to assist with a woman who was bucked off a horse on a trail a few kilometres behind Coombs,” he said.

He said they travelled back into the trails and old logging roads with the Coombs Volunteer Fire Department to assist in moving the woman with their special one wheeled stretcher.

“She had suspected back injuries. She was conscious and coherent, in some pain. We put her in a spine board and transported her out,” he said.

He said 13 of their volunteer members were involved for a total of about three hours, but rather than going home for the rest of the weekend, they were soon called again.

“Sunday morning around 2 a.m. we were called out to look for an intoxicated female who was out for a walk alone with her dog in the Dashwood area about three and a half hours earlier.”

He said about 30 of their members eventually responded to two call-outs as they scoured the backroads before the police found her around 8:30 a.m.

“We were pretty close to calling in other groups,” Yelland said, explaining they go through Emergency Management B.C. to get reinforcement from neighbouring search and rescue groups in Nanaimo, Comox, Port Alberni or even Campbell River and further afield if needed.

He said they look at the energy level of their volunteers, how long the search goes on and things like having started at 2 a.m., “meaning people probably hadn’t had a lot of sleep.”

“We were helped by it being Sunday morning, so people didn’t have to go to work,” he said, but the female was located before a call was made and it took them to 10 a.m. to wrap up.

It turned out the 50-year-old woman had gone to a nearby hotel after an argument.

“As soon as we were able to contact local hotels in the morning we found her,” said RCMP Cpl. Jesse Foreman.

“We had to take it seriously because we didn’t know her level of intoxication and she was from Alberta and was not familiar with the area,” he said.

Foreman said it was “just a large inconvenience,” but a good result to the situation, adding “it’s not like we can charge someone for not reporting they were going to a hotel.”

So rather than their scheduled practice Sunday morning, Arrowsmith Search and Rescue members cleaned up and headed to the Qualicum Beach Family Day Parade where they got to show off their brand new truck.

Over the weekend ASR also sent three members to assist with a search in Nanaimo, highlighting their mutual aid work and the busy weekend.

“There’s no pattern to it,” Yelland said of their call volume, pointing to their record busy winter season.

While they had 32 calls in all of 2014, they got 18 in January-March alone. That died off to a more normal three or four calls a month in April and May, until the three calls in the last two days of the month. The group is also busy expanding their hall at the Coombs #2 Fire Hall, which they hope to start construction on this summer.

Visit www.asar.ca for more information or to help the busy group of volunteers.

Just Posted

Thrift Shop celebrated during SOS 50th year

A celebration week will take place from Sept. 24-29 at the Thrift Shop

Open burn ban lifted for Coastal Fire Centre

Prohibitions will be lifted at noon on Sept. 19

RDN to increase water services fees

The Regional District of Nanaimo is amending its water services charges to… Continue reading

New storytelling series in Parksville invites public to share their tales

Mid-Island StoryTellers to hold their first Slice of Life event Sept. 28

More students in French Immersion across province, in Qualicum school district

French Immersion enrolment continues to grow at SD69

U.S. congressman issues dire warning to Canada’s NAFTA team: time is running out

Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is expected to resume talks with the U.S.

Canadian air force short 275 pilots

Attrition outpaces recruitment and training claims Air Force

Teacher suspended after physically shushing, saying ‘shut up’ to student

Grade 5 student reported feeling ‘confused and a little scared’

A B.C. society helps to reforest Crown land after wildfires

Forest Enhancement Society of BC focuses on wildfire mitigation and the reforestation

B.C. marijuana workers may face U.S. border scrutiny

Cannabis still illegal federally south of the border

New political party holds an informational session in Vernon

Maxime Bernier’s The People’s Party of Canada draws about 2o interested patrons to Vernon pub.

B.C. MLAs reminded of rural school struggles

Finance committee hears of falling enrolment, staff shortages

B.C. VIEWS: ’Not photo radar’ coming soon to high-crash areas

ICBC deficit now largely due to reckless and distracted driving

Researchers tag great white shark in Atlantic Canada

Information will be used to learn more about where white sharks move in Canadian waters

Most Read