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Radio battery capacity testing

Recent searches have showed that a number of radio batteries failed in cold conditions.

Frequently asked questions



What skills do I need for bush searches? Experience in overnight bushwalking and the ability to navigate off-track.

What skills do I need for snow searches? Most winter searches are in the snowfields, so previous snow camping experience is essential. The ability to use snowshoes or skis is highly desirable. Some members choose not to participate in snow searches.

Sound and light searching

A sound/light line search is a quick and efficient method using whistle, voice and light to attract the attention of a responsive lost person at night and then listen or see a response from them.

Torches for searches

High powered and long lasting torches are essential equipment for searches.  We sometimes search during the night  in dense scrub and forest, and we occasionally camp overnight on search tasks, so a powerful and long lasting torch is required.  A spare set of batteries is essential too.

Torches for use on searches should:

  • be durable and waterproof
  • use two or more AA (penlight) batteries
  • have low and high power modes

A high quality head torch is very useful while searching and travelling at night and for cooking and camping out as they leave your hands free.  A low power mode is useful when using the torch in camp or at search base as it conserves the batteries.  A boost mode is useful when more power is needed in the field. 

Head torch example - Petzl MYO® RXP

Missing person found in Blue Range

20:50 Sun 19 Aug 2012.  Bush Search and Rescue was called out for a search for a missing person in the Blue Range near Rubicon.

The missing man was separated from his companion while in the bush at about 11am on Sunday 19 August.

11 BSAR searchers travelled by bus to the search location on Monday morning.  Shortly before arriving at search base the missing man was located safe and well in a gully having spent the night out. 

Bush Search and Rescue Search group at Yea on the way home.

Missing deer hunter near Corryong located

A deer hunter was reported missing near Corryong in North East Victoria after failing to return to camp on Friday 3 August 2012. Police and SES searched until 2am on Saturday then resumed searching at dawn. 

The missing person found his way out of the bush at 11:25am on Saturday 4 August.

Bush  Search and Rescue was not activated for this search.

Roping up

Roping up may be required during steep snow and ice rescues, or if you go alpine climbing or ski mountaineering.  This video from the The Mountaineering Council of Scotland demonstrates how to rope up.

This video demonstrates how to tie off coils with a Figure 8 knot.

Emergency Services Foundation - 2013 scholarships

There is an opportunity for BSAR members to apply for an Emergency Services Foundation (ESF) scholarship.

The Emergency Services Foundation was established following the Ash Wednesday bushfires in 1983. It operates as a trust to provide immediate support for those who suffer hardship as a result of the death of a family member or injuries sustained in the line of duty.

BSAR Training Weekend notice 27-28 October 2012

BSAR Training

Our annual training weekend this year will provide BSAR members and experienced bushwalkers with training in the skills required for bush searching.  Participation in a Victorian Rogaining Association (VRA) rogaine on Saturday is ideal for BSAR members as it is a close match to what is expected of us during a search; accurate off track bush navigation in small groups. 

This 12-hour event will provide ample opportunity to practise navigation in friendly team environment.  If you are unable to register as a team, don't be put off - we'll find a compatible partner for you or team for you to join.  Sunday will focus on search specific aspects, including a mock search and evacuation.

Tribute to Bill Bewsher

A gathering was held in Melbourne on Thursday 19 July at the Retreat Hotel in Abbotsford to celebrate the achievements and life of Bill Bewsher.

Many tales and memories were shared of Bill's remarkable contributions to education, the Bushcraft and Mountain Leadership (BMLC) course, Bush Search and Rescue, the Federation of Victorian Walking Clubs (now Bushwalking Victoria), Melbourne University Mountaineering Club, his quest for the first ascent of Federation Peak in South West Tasmania, and his leadership and exploration at the Australian Antartic Base.

Bill's achievements have been recognised in part by the naming of an Antartic mountain, a Tasmanian pass and Tasmanian lake after him.

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