Royal Canadian Air Force

Royal Canadian Air Force
Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

September 16, 2013 08:00 ET

National Search and Rescue Exercise to Challenge Canada's Bravest

17 WING WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwired - Sept. 16, 2013) - The Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) will host the National Search and Rescue Exercise (SAREX) September 16 to 20 in Gimli, Manitoba, providing realistic training scenarios to enhance interoperability and decision-making among Canada's search and rescue (SAR) community.

"SAREX 2013 brings together Canada's close-knit SAR partners and immerses participants in rigorous environments to test multi-organization coordination and readiness," said Colonel Joël Roy, Commander, 17 Wing Winnipeg. "The RCAF is proud to be a part of the tradition of operational excellence in Canada's national SAR system as we strive to fulfill the SAR motto "that others may live."

SAREX is an annual exercise that includes about two hundred participants from the Canadian Armed Forces, the Civil Air Search and Rescue Association (CASARA), the Canadian Coast Guard, and members of Search and Rescue Manitoba (SARMAN).

During SAREX 2013, participants will be challenged with land, air, and water-based SAR scenarios, including a plane crash, a marine rescue, an air intercept, and a rope rescue on the face of a cliff. These scenarios will test a variety of SAR skills, including search techniques, parachute accuracy, mountaineering, swimming, and emergency medical response.

RCAF participation will include SAR technicians, pilots, flight engineers, load masters, air combat systems officers, and maintenance and support personnel. In addition, primary SAR air assets will include the CH-146 Griffon, the CC-130 Hercules, the CC-115 Buffalo, and the CH-149 Cormorant. A CC-138 Twin Otter from 440 Transport Squadron in Yellowknife, N.W.T. will also participate.

The RCAF responds to about 1200 SAR calls annually. Canada's area of responsibility for SAR is the largest in the world, with some of the most remote and arduous terrain, challenging weather conditions, and longest coastline. The Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces continue to work with SAR partners at the federal, provincial, territorial, and municipal levels to deliver world-class SAR support and to promote education and training to prevent SAR incidents from occurring.

The national SAR readiness postures will be maintained from the rescue units across Canada. In the event of a major distress or nearby request for help, the exercise will be suspended to respond.

Note to editors/news directors: For more information, please contact Captain Jordan Woodman, Public Affairs Officer, 17 Wing Winnipeg, at (204) 833-2500, extension 6499, or at (204) 227-3439.

For more information, please visit the National SAR Secretariat website, the Royal Canadian Air Force website, and the following web page on 17 Wing Winnipeg.

Contact Information

  • Captain Jordan Woodman
    Public Affairs Officer
    17 Wing Winnipeg
    (204) 833-2500, extension 6499
    (204) 227-3439

    Information: (204) 833-2500, x 4529
    After hours: (204) 294-5081