Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM)

Follow this link to learn more about VDEM's Ground Search and Rescue College (GSAR). GSAR typically runs their amazing courses at least once a year, sometimes twice. The course last for 2 full weekends and offer basic outdoor camping accommodations. You must be affiliated with a Virginia SAR group (with or without canines) to sign up for courses. The courses fill up quickly, so when registration opens, do not hesitate.

--GSAR offers courses for:

  1. Field Team Member (FTM)
  2. Field Team Leader (FTL)
  3. Field Team Sign-Cutter (FTS)
  4. Managing Land Search Operations (MLSO)

Boating Safety Course

Boater Safety Course

This course is mandatory to operate the VSRDA boat for water training.

National Incident Management System (NIMS)

FEMA offers the National Incident Management System (NIMS). NIMS was developed so responders from different jurisdictions and disciplines can work together better to respond to natural disasters and emergencies, including acts of terrorism.

The following NIMS courses are required for Active VSRDA Members:

  1. ICS 100: An Introduction to ICS
  2. ICS 200: Basic ICS for Single Resources and Initial Action Incident
  3. ICS 700: NIMS An Introduction
  4. ICS 800 - National Response Framework, An Introduction
  5. ICS 809 - Emergency Support Function (ESF) #9 - Search and Rescue

Animated SAR Knots

Follow this link to a series of animations detailing how-to tie common knots used in SAR.

Animated SAR Knots

 --for anyone in performing SAR in Virginia, who should attend the Virgina Department of Emergency Management's (VDEM) - Ground Search and Rescue College's (GSAR) courses.