In January 1999, the department initiated the Technical Rescue Program with the objective of upgrading all engine company capabilities to the “Light” Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) level.
“Trench Rescue” and USAR training have become the standard level of operation along with the creation of a specialized State OES/Firescope ICS Certified USAR Team. The team is now a part of Regional Task Force 7.
All personnel at Stations 11, 12, 14, and 17 are a part of the designated USAR response units, and Station 11 houses the USAR trailer (shown above) which can respond anywhere necessary.
Additionally, members of both stations have received advanced training for confined space rescue and high angle rescue.
The Department also maintains one FEMA/OES Advanced Disaster Search K-9 Team consisting of one handler and one air-scenting canine.
The team has previously responded to the New York City terrorist attacks of 9/11, the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, Hurricane Katrina, San Simeon Earthquake, La Conchita landslide, and the Tsunami in Japan.