Santa Cruz Search and Rescue


The mission of Santa Cruz County Search and Rescue is to advance knowledge and expertise of search and rescue in order to assist county, state and federal officials and the general public during emergencies, missing persons activities, disasters or other similar incidents within Santa Cruz County, California.

The Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Search and Rescue (SAR) team is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization comprised of highly trained volunteers, dedicated to serving the community by educating the public and searching, rescuing, and recovering missing persons in Santa Cruz County, and across the State of California.

Santa Cruz County Search and Rescue works closely with the Santa Cruz County Sheriff to professionally deploy technical experts when required. Our dedicated team of volunteers, representing the diversity of our County, are on-call 24-hours a day, 365-days a year, rain or shine.

Santa Cruz SAR encourages you to safely enjoy the beautiful county of Santa Cruz, California.

Report A Missing Person

To REPORT A MISSING PERSON dial 9-1-1 or call your local emergency number.

There is no waiting period to report a missing person.

Support SCZ SAR

The Santa Cruz County SAR team is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization comprised of members who are on call 24-hours a day, 365-days a year, to assist with the location, and rescue of missing or stranded persons.


Interested in serving your community by volunteering with the Santa Cruz County Search and Rescue Team?

We bi-annually recruit and train new members to our team. Please follow the link to learn more.


The roots of the Santa Cruz County Search and Rescue Team reach back to 1972, when Boy Scout Explorer Post 613 maintained a well trained Search and Rescue unit consisting of 20 to 30 members.

What began as an interest by local Boy Scouts was recognized in 1984 as a separately functioning unit of the Santa Cruz Sheriff's Office and is now recognized by the State of California, Office of Emergency Services as a mutual aid resource for neighboring counties. The SAR team is comprised of both Sheriff personnel and volunteers from the community. The number of members has changed little over the years, remaining highly skilled and dedicated, making SCZ SAR a valuable resource for the Sheriff's Office and the community.

SAR team members volunteer a generous number of hours each year, stepping away from jobs, friends, and family in service to training and in performing searches. Santa Cruz County SAR carries out search on foot, in vehicles, in water and in the air. Searchers have been deployed for missing adults, missing children, and even evidence in criminal cases. Rescue operations have been made for hikers, bikers, joggers, lost children, people with Alzheimer’s, and despondent individuals across all manners of terrain in Santa Cruz County.

While the searches are never easy, often inconveniently timed and in challenging conditions, team members give unflagging support to the cause so that others may live. Their time and effort continue to provide valuable search and rescue service to Santa Cruz County and beyond.