Do I have to pay for search & rescue?
No, citizens will never pay a fee to activate search & rescue teams. It works the same as calling the police. Donations are appreciated, but payment is never a necessity.
Can I personally request search & rescue to perform a search for someone or something?
No, search & rescue teams operate much like a business who's only customer is the Flathead County Sheriff's Office. Flathead & North Valley will only deploy at the request of the sheriff's office once a call has been made to 911 or through a mutual aid request.
I work a full-time job, can I still volunteer with SAR?
Yes, most members work full-time day jobs and respond to calls as they are able. A good percentage of calls occur during the evenings and weekends anyway.
Can I request medically trained search & rescue personnel to staff an event?
Yes, requests must be made individually to each respective agency's board and membership. Depending on your area, you may prefer one agency over the other. Please see the Contact Us information.
If I join one of the SAR agencies, will I be required to perform unpleasant tasks i.e. decedent recoveries, lengthy missions, and various other unpleasant things?
Maybe. On one had we do not push people outside their respective comfort zones and encourage them to be cross trained in all areas so they are comfortable for most situations they encounter, but we simply cannot control all circumstances that influence a mission.
Can I request search & rescue personnel to give a presentation at my organization or school?
Yes, search & rescue members love what they do and love the opportunity to share with others all the different facets of search & rescue. Please see the Contact Us information.
Do either of the search & rescue agencies solicit donations over the phone?
No, please see the statement issued by the Flathead County Sheriff's Office regarding scammers posing as SAR agencies requesting donations.
Flathead County Sheriff’s Office was recently informed a company identifying themselves as “SAR Charities”’ is soliciting donations for Search and Rescue operations in Flathead County. Flathead County Search and Rescue groups have no affiliation with this group and do not receive funds from this fundraising activity. Flathead County Search and Rescue groups do not solicit funds by phone. Recently Great Falls, Butte, and Bozeman have all had their areas targeted and have released similar news releases to advise the public.
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