Sidney, B.C. – With 75% of British Columbia covered in mountains and 64% of it forested, B.C.’s diverse beauty and climate ramps up the challenges that ground search and rescue (GSAR) groups face. Between mountainous terrain, extreme weather and swiftly-changing conditions, GSAR members have to be knowledgeable, skilled and trained to handle whatever they encounter.

Today, BCSARA is delighted to share its first ever Year In Review report for 2022. Inside, we hope you enjoy reading some remarkable stories as well as appreciate the value that search and rescue volunteers bring through our 2022 statistics including:

  • 1,019 lives saved (that would not have survived without GSAR intervention)
  • 1,758 people rescued
  • An additional 262 individuals rescued (who were with the subject)
  • Responded to 1,510 incidents
  • Volunteered 441,026 hours of service in 2022


“We’ve always known that our highly-trained volunteer ground search and rescue groups do some amazing work, but seeing it documented, in one place, really drives home just how much they do. I think B.C. can be very proud of the services these volunteers provide and the difference they make every single day. My sincere thanks to the 78 GSAR groups and their 3,400+ volunteers whose dedication is an embodiment of the SAR maxim: So others may live.” – Dwight Yochim, CEO, BCSARA

“Our first year in review report is the result of new capacity that BCSARA now has with staff expertise, robust data, and an extremely capable SAR community. This report reflects the many stories of how incredible GSAR is – the dedication, value, commitment, sacrifice and professionalism that these world class volunteers bring to their communities every day.

My thanks goes out to those who helped prepare this review and to the SAR community who bring value to everyone who enjoys beautiful B.C.” – Chris Mushumanski, President, BCSARA

Media Only Contact Information

BC Search and Rescue Association
Nancy Argyle, Manager of Public Relations and Communications
250-204-0163 /


Ground search and rescue (GSAR) in British Columbia is provided solely by highly-trained volunteers. On call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, these skilled professionals provide their time, dedication and expertise as well as their own personal gear at no cost to the people of B.C. and to the individuals they rescue. BC GSAR groups have never not responded to an activation in the 20-year history of the BCSARA organization. BCSARA is proud to represent the 3,400+ GSAR volunteers in B.C. who make up 78 groups across the province.  To donate to support these volunteers, please visit here.

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How to request GSAR help

All requests must go through 911 or, if using a satellite phone, through the Emergency Coordination Centre at 1-800-663-3456. Do NOT wait 24 hours to report someone overdue or missing. GSAR groups can only be activated by a requesting agency such as the police, fire or EHS. There is no charge for search and rescue in British Columbia.