Civil Air Patrol Practices Search And Rescue Skills

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Civil Air Patrol practiced its search and rescue skills by conducting a SAREX (Search And Rescue Exercise) at the Cleveland Regional Airport last weekend. The exercise was hosted by CAP Region 2, whose commander is Ltc. Jack Mullinax.  More than two dozen CAP members, including cadets and senior members, assembled in an upper room at the airport facility. About half of the participants traveled in from as far away as Knoxville and Jackson, Tn.

The exercise started with a mission briefing conducted by the incident Commander, Ltc.

Gordon Merrill, who started the morning's briefing by emphasizing, "Other than safety, today's primary focus is on training." He explained that the mission was being executed using primarily paper forms. The fictitious training scenario indicated that "there was a small solar flare that washed over the earth. The US was in the path of the flare. As a result, we can not use the computer based system so this will be a paper-based mission." This is a departure from recent years when there has been a massive transition to electronic tracking, but Ltc. Merrill says it's good to keep the ability to execute a mission with the paper-based system also.

Following the safety briefing conducted by Ltc. Mark Landrum and Maj. Gary Fiser, acting as mission safety officers for the day, Regional Vice Commander Col. Barry Melton addressed the all-volunteer staff, "Be safe today. Training is important, but safety is primary."  Col. Melton is in touch with all CAP operations conducted in Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, and his native state of Tennessee. He said, "We can be proud.  The southeast region has the highest ops tempo in the nation. Here in Tennessee, we are coming into the severe weather season, so this is a great time to make sure we all know our jobs and can execute the mission efficiently."

Following the initial briefings, members broke into various task groups. There were two aircrew teams that practiced various search and rescue maneuvers, and in addition to the mission based team, a ground team was dispatched with two cadets and two senior members under the leadership of Maj. David Ellis, who successfully led the team searching for a practice beacon that had been previously hidden in the woods, using only electronic signal finding equipment. 

Where this an actual search and rescue mission, there would be little difference in the operations. The Civil Air Patrol is tasked with executing over 90% of airborne search and rescue mission in the continental U.S.

For more information about CAP, visit www.gocivilairpatrol.com.  In addition to squadrons in Chattanooga (an all senior member squadron and a composite squadron that includes cadets ages 12-20), there are composite squadrons in Rhea County, Tullahoma and Cleveland, Tn.


Brooker Road In Whitfield County To Be Closed Aug. 3-Sept. 28

Brooker Drive in Whitfield County will be closed for new road construction from Aug. 3-Sept. 28, according to Whitfield County officials.  The road will be closed to through traffic between Raisin Woods and Underwood Road.  Detour from the east side: North along Underwood Road, then west along Dawnville Road, then south on Brooker Drive.  Detour from west ... (click for more)

Gretchen Archer Signs New Novel Double Mint At Barnes And Noble Saturday

Local Chattanooga area author Gretchen Archer will be signing her new novel, Double Mint: A Davis Way Crime Caper, at the Hamilton Place Barnes & Noble on Saturday from 2-4 p.m. Ms. Archer, a Tennessee housewife who started writing after her kids grew up and moved out of the house, is the USA Today bestselling author of three other books in the Davis Way Crime Caper universe: ... (click for more)

County Taking First Step Toward Replacing County Jail Downtown With Workhouse Addition At Silverdale

County officials are taking the first step toward replacing the long-criticized county jail downtown with an addition at the workhouse at Silverdale. The County Commission is set to approve next Wednesday a $150,000 contract for the PFM government financial consulting firm to begin working out the details. County Mayor Jim Coppinger said he believes the move will save the ... (click for more)

Birchwood Residents Organize To Try To Keep Old School

Birchwood residents have organized to try to keep the old Birchwood School that serves as a community center. Jason Wright, who said he is an alumnus of the school and recently moved his family back home, said the community is concerned over the possibility of the county tearing the school down. He said he was advised that the boiler in the old school has stopped working and ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Strong

The hearts, minds and prayers of Tennesseans, and of the entire nation, have been turned toward Chattanooga this month.  We are sickened and saddened by the senseless tragedy, and we grieve for the families of the five service members who were killed, Gunnery Sgt. Thomas J. Sullivan, Sgt. Carson A. Holmquist, Lance Cpl. Squire “Skip” K. Wells, Staff Sgt. David A. Wyatt and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Dr. Palmer, You’re Toast

America is absolutely furious! By 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon there were 36,000 people who had petitioned the White House to extradite Walter Palmer, who is today the most despised man in all of North America. On the Yelp.com website, that promotes his dentistry business in Eden Prairie, Minn, over 6,000 had posted violent, vulgar and vicious notes and, for the record, 60 of them ... (click for more)