Special Teams

The Santa Cruz Sheriff's Search and Rescue team maintains several Special Teams which train to standards within specific disciplines of search and rescue. 

These teams are made up of members of the greater SC SAR team and meet to train within their specialty throughout the year. 

All special team members shall meet the basic SCZ SAR criteria as a field ready team member prior to being certified as a member of any Special Team.  Such criteria may include age requirements, medical requirements, minimum physical fitness requirements, emergency medical training or other educational requirements, and hazardous material training. 

Technical Rescue Special Team

SCZ SAR Maintains Technical Team that is divided into several levels of competency, based on training and expertise; including Awarness level, Level I Technical Rescue Technician, & Level II Technical Rescue Technician.  

SCZ SAR Technical Team standards are compliant with NFPA 1006, rev 2021. 

Technical Team members maintain a high-level of proficiency and regularly update their personal equipment to ensure it is able to successfully function in high-angle environments.

Mountain Bike Special Team

OHV Special Team

SCZ SAR utilizes four all terrain vehicles (ATV) and two utility task vehicles (UTV) otherwise known as a side-by-side. SCZ SAR certifies our OHV operators and regularly trains across various terrain and conditions. Our OHV resources provide invaluable in moving resources into the difficult corners of the County. 

OHV team members have exceptional enthusiasm and expertise in motor vehicle maintenance, management, and operation. 

Swiftwater Special Team

SCZ SAR maintains a 12' inflatable river raft, floating litter equipment, as well as the personal equipment required for water-rescue environements. Swiftwater special team members maintain training in flood & river environments and assist the Sheriff and partner County & State agencies in search, rescue, and recovery activities near or in bodies of water. 

Communications Special Team

SCZ SAR deploys VHF radios & cell-signal boosters for improved communication throughout any SAR event. SCZ SAR communications special team members are dedicated to the lostics of emergency response, designing, planning, deploying, and managing communication networks in challenging and unforgiving environments. 

Overhead Special Team

SCZ SAR utilizes modern search management techniques and technology to ensure efficient and intelligent deployment of resources. Using California and County OES standards, in conjunction with BASARC best practices, the SCZ SAR Overhead Special Team may be tasked with logistics & equipment deployment, lost person assessment, investigation & interviewing, volunteer management & deployment, data & GIS operations and management, communications, and safety.   

SCZ SAR Overhead Special Team manages each SAR event and is comprised of a dedicated team of highly trained planning and operations experts with decades of search management experience.