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ID
8-509-1181
Name
Cave Search and Rescue Technician
Status
Published
Updated
12/2/2019 4:11:45 PM
Released
11/07/2017
Resource Category
Search and Rescue
Primary Core Capability
Mass Search and Rescue Operations
Secondary Core Capability
 
Resource Kind
Personnel
Overall Function
The Cave Search and Rescue (SAR) Technician performs search, rescue, and recovery in caves featuring primarily horizontal cave passage, but may include slopes or vertical segments
Single resource
In conjunction with a NIMS typed team
NIMS Typed Team
Cave Search and Rescue Team
In conjunction with a NIMS typed unit
NIMS Typed Unit
 
Description Notes
Not Specified
Supporting Core Capabilities
None
Types
Type Description
Type 1Same as Type 2, PLUS: Performs search, rescue, and recovery in caves with swiftwater or other highly complex rigging requirements
Type 2Same as Type 3, PLUS: Performs search, rescue, and recovery operations in caves that feature segments of tight passage, long or complex vertical challenges, and single rope techniques
Type 3The Cave SAR Technician: 1. Performs rescue operations in vertical cave segments under guidance of Type 2 (or higher) Cave SAR Technician 2. Provides first aid or other medical care at level appropriate with rescuer certifications and team protocols 3. Reports to a Cave SAR Team Leader, if applicable 4. Operates within the Incident Command System (ICS) in and entry level position within a Cave SAR Team 5. Operates in environments with and without infrastructure 6. Provides safety of self and team members; medical care of self, team members, and patients; and simple decontamination of self, team members and equipment
Components
Component Notes  
EducationNot Specified
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Same as Type 2
Type 2Same as Type 3
Type 3Not Specified
Training1. The AHJ may require additional training, capabilities, and endorsements for unique working environments 2. For Type 3, National Cave Rescue Commission (NCRC) Level 1 is an example of a Cave SAR training program 3. For Type 2, National Cave Rescue Commission (NCRC) Level 2 is an example of a Cave SAR training program 4. For Type 1, NCRC Level 3 is an example of a Cave SAR training program 5. NFPA 1670, Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents, 2017 (Chapter 13 Cave Search and Rescue) discusses Cave SAR training.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Same as Type 2, PLUS: AHJ verification of completion of a cave SAR training program that results in the following position-specific awareness and capabilities: 1. Address complex rigging problems in vertical environments 2. Perform rescues with minimal equipment
Type 2Same as Type 3, PLUS: AHJ verification of completion of a cave SAR training program that results in the following position-specific awareness and capabilities: 1. Steep angle evacuation 2. High angle evacuation 3. Techniques that facilitate patient movement with limited personnel 4. Ascending and descending on rope
Type 3Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) verification of completion of a cave SAR training program that results in the following position-specific awareness and capabilities: 1. Awareness of hazards encountered in caves 2. Ability to move through horizontal and low-complexity vertical caves efficiently, effectively and safely 3. Ability to assist with horizontal or slope evacuation 4. Ability to move competently in vertical environment using single rope techniques (SRT) for personal movement, both down and up, including ability to down climb on fixed rope and perform change-overs from climb to descend and descend to climb 5. Use, care, inspection and maintenance of all related personal protective equipment (PPE), tools, devices, and equipment specific to this position and sub-specialties 6. General travel, exploration, route finding, marking, and mapping 7. Use of surface and underground communications equipment, and establishment of underground communications systems 8. Incident initial response, including Go/No-go processes 9. Personnel accountability and tracking systems for surface and entry and exit, including use of entry and exit checklists 10. Underground search techniques 11. Patient medical care and evacuation 12. Self-help and self-rescue 13. Response to team members in a hazard zone AHJ verification of completion of training specific to technical rope rescue for this resulting in the following knowledge and capabilities: 1. Rope rescue equipment, including characteristics of rope and webbing 2. Knots 3. Anchors 4. Belays, progress capture systems, and rope assist systems 5. Short distance ascending and descending on rope, including ability to perform change-overs 6. Patient packaging and litter handling 7. Rigging and operation of raising and lowering systems 8. Low-angle/slope rescue 9. Improvised rescue techniques
ExperienceThe National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1006: Standard for Technical Rescuer Professional Qualifications and NFPA (specifically Chapter 13 Cave Search and Rescue) (2017) and 1670: Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents (specifically Chapter 13 Cave Search and Rescue) (2017) address knowledge, skills, and abilities standards that may apply to Cave SAR.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Same as Type 2
Type 2Same as Type 3
Type 3Knowledge, Skills and Abilities: 1. Knowledge of cave rescue and associated hazards 2. Knowledge of use, care, inspection and maintenance of all PPE, tools, devices and equipment specific to this position 3. Ability to carry out technical rescue operations; rope rescue; and Cave SAR AHJ-validated experience demonstrating the following: 1. Scene management and dynamic assessment of risk 2. Cave SAR techniques 3. Identification of hazards, including potential operating environments 4. Completion of a Cave SAR Technician Position Task Book (PTB) or equivalent AHJ documentation
Physical/Medical FitnessThe NIMS Guideline for the National Qualification System (NQS) defines Physical/Medical Fitness levels for NIMS positions.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Same as Type 2, PLUS: 1. Moderate 2. Physically capable of performing search, rescue, and recovery in cave swiftwater while utilizing appropriate PPE
Type 2Same as Type 3, PLUS: Physically capable of performing search, rescue, and recovery in long and short vertical caves
Type 31. Arduous 2. Meets minimum physical fitness standards in accordance with the AHJ’s Job Related Physical Ability Test (JRPAT) 3. Maintains immunizations in accordance with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommended adult immunization schedule for the United States of America
CurrencyProvider must carry out and use any background checks as applicable law specifies. This may include a background check completed within past 12 months; sex-offender registry check; and a local, state, and a local, state, and national criminal history.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Same as Type 2
Type 2Same as Type 3
Type 31. Annual refresher of related SAR skills and abilities in cave environments 2. Functions in this position during an operational incident, planned event, exercise, drill, or simulation per AHJ requirements 3. Background checks as applicable law permits or requires
Professional and Technical Licenses and CertificationsThe AHJ determines the emergency medical certifications the technician needs to meet the minimum criteria, which can include first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and BLS.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Same as Type 2
Type 2Same as Type 3
Type 31. Certification or completion of cave SAR training that relates to the job standards 2. AHJ-required BLS-level medical care certification or recertification
Composition and Ordering Specifications
Specification
Discuss logistics for deploying this position, such as working conditions, length of deployment, security, lodging, transportation, and meals, prior to deployment
The requestor should consider the need for additional recognized capability or endorsement, such as animal rescue
1076
Notes
References
Reference
FEMA, NIMS 508: Cave Search and Rescue Team
FEMA, NIMS 509: Cave Search and Rescue Team Leader
FEMA, National Incident Management System (NIMS), October 2017
FEMA, NIMS Guideline for the National Qualification Sysytem, November 2017
FEMA, National Response Framework, June 2016
ASTM International F2890-12: Standard Guide for Hazard Awareness for Search and Rescue Personnel, 2012
National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1006: Standard for Technical Rescuer Professional Qualifications, 2017 (Chapter 13 Cave Search and Rescue)
NFPA 1670: Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents, 2017 (Chapter 13 Cave Search and Rescue)
National Interagency Aviation Committee (NIAC), Interagency Aviation Training Subcommittee, Interagency Aviation Training (IAT) Guide, 2014