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B.C. search and rescue groups smash record for calls in a year as pandemic pushes people outdoors

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B.C. search and rescue groups smash record for calls in a year as pandemic pushes people outdoors

VICTORIA —
British Columbia’s public safety minister is urging backcountry enthusiasts to take safety precautions before heading out after a record alternative of calls to ground search and rescue groups.

Mike Farnworth says volunteer personnel soar into action in dangerous circumstances and inclement weather to back those in distress, adding their job has turn into harder over the past year as more people are exploring the outdoors as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.

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The Public Safety Ministry and Emergency Management BC say in a joint release that the search and rescue groups have been deployed 1,959 instances since last April and 10 people have died in avalanches.

They say search and rescue crews attended an average of about 1,500 callouts in old years, more than the remainder of Canada combined.

BC Search and Rescue Association president Chris Kelly says 79 groups that respond to calls have been pushed to the restrict during the pandemic.

He says COVID-19 has made dangerous work even more dangerous and all people venturing into the backcountry may aloof attain their part to plan ahead.

“Make obvious you are prepared for where you are going. Have a plan, have the fitting gear, know the particular way to make employ of it and take the training,” he said.

Jennifer Rice, the parliamentary secretary for Emergency Preparedness, says even those taking what they think is a brief travel may aloof let any individual know where they’re going and learn about the terrain and weather beforehand. She also suggests bringing presents for an unexpected overnight stay.

The province is advising anyone who wants back to call for it immediately and to learn from the resources available on the Avalanche Canada internet page.

This relate by The Canadian Press was first revealed April 3, 2021.

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B.C. search and rescue groups smash record for calls in a year as pandemic pushes people outdoors