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tasks. You would probably put some bogus clues out there, and the Scouts would fi nd the clues and report them back to the incident base. The inci- dent base would determine if they’re valid clues that might have been leſt by the subject.”


AND HOW DO YOU KEEP YOUR SEARCH- ERS FROM BECOMING SUBJECTS? Williams cites the practice searches he has led in Albuquerque’s Elena Gallegos Park. He would tell search- ers to stop at the wilderness gate if they hadn’t found the subject. “That enabled us to control the area and still give them a challenge in terms of whom they were looking for,” he says.


TALK ABOUT WHAT RESEARCHERS HAVE LEARNED ABOUT SUBJECT TEN- DENCIES. “Diff erent outdoor users


have diff erent characteristics,” Palmer says. “For example, hunters tend to be pretty focused on where they are. A backpacker’s pretty focused because he has a destination in mind. Typically Scouts are trained to stay put. Of course, they don’t always do that. There are more and more Alzheimer’s patients who are becom- ing missing. They’re really diffi cult to fi nd, because they don’t oſt en do predictable things.”


HOW HAS TECHNOLOGY CHANGED SEARCH AND RESCUE? “There are a lot fewer searches than there used to be because of cellphones and GPS and SPOT locator beacons; there are a lot more rescues than there are searches,” Palmer says. “But it’s serious business. If a person is missing, somebody’s worried about them.”


HOW CAN COUNSELORS REALLY BRING THE TOPIC TO LIFE? “Taking a tour of [a SAR base] would be great,” Williams says. “Scouts could actually see the device for lowering rescuers from a helicopter … having it actu- ally hooked up to the winch on the aircraſt .”


REQUIREMENT 2 IS ALL ABOUT STAYING FOUND AND AVOIDING BECOMING A SAR SUBJECT. WHAT’S THE KEY LESSON? “Nearly every time a person goes missing, if you go back and debrief that person aſt er they’re found, you can nearly always determine that there were one or two decisions that that person made early on that predi- cated the problem,” Palmer says. “It’s all about good decision-making in the out-of-doors and, like the Scouts say, being prepared.” ¿


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