(The Search & Rescue barn in Lander.)
(Lander, Wyo.) – In a meeting with the Fremont County Commission earlier this week, Sheriff Skip Hornecker detailed a number of new and changing items related to Search and Rescue efforts.
Some years ago, Hornecker said, the Riverton SAR unit was gifted a boat to be used for water rescues. After trying to find a way to make it fit the job description, Hornecker said it has been decided that it might be more cost effective to sell the boat and get a new craft that is made for search and rescue missions.
“We need a boat, but we don’t need this boat,” he said.
He and the commission discussed some of what it might take to convert the existing boat into something SAR could use. If the boat’s title was still in the donor’s name, it might be possible for them to sell it and donate the funds for an appropriate craft. That conversion would meet the requirement set by the donors, Hornecker said. He would not be able to sell the boat and use the funds to buy a something like a snow plow, because the donors wanted the gift to be used for water rescues.
Another SAR item he discussed was Sublette County might ask for neighboring counties to help pay for standby costs for their helicopter. Hornecker said Fremont County has paid hourly rates for using the copter during SARs in recent years, and he understands their desire to keep the helicopter available more often than it is now. “I understand their dilemma, but I’m not seeing the financial benefit substantially right now,” he said.
Hornecker also noted that through some Wyoming Department of Homeland Security funding, his office has worked with the Civil Air Patrol to outfit two fixed-wing planes with infrared cameras to aid future missions.