FLWG Hosts Annual Florida Emergency Services Academy
Monday, January 2, 2017
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By Maj Judy Schiff, Naples Senior Squadron
Avon Park, FL--

Florida Emergency Services Academy (FLESA) held in Avon Park, FL, is a one week search and rescue training program.  Seventy CAP members (45 cadets and 25 senior), from across Florida Wing instructed and  trained in several search and rescue specialties.  Highly motivated instructors trained four ground teams in search theory and fieldcraft from basic to advanced skill levels using classroom “hands on” and field training techniques. 


Expert and accomplished flight instructors trained 7 aircrews in downed aircraft spotting, missing persons’ searches, aerial photography, and damage assessment.  Aircrews consist of the Mission Pilot, Mission Observer, and back seat Mission Scanner/Photographer.   Scanners train for target acquisition, photographing targets, and accurately reporting critical information.  Occasionally aircrews direct ground teams to the target.  Mission observers assist the pilot by navigating, communicating and recording critical information. Mission Pilots ensure they are flying safely and comply with air traffic control and staying within all the FAA guidelines.  Frequently, CAP is asked to support search and rescue operations for local, state, or other interagency organizations when time is of the essence to save a life.  

Article Information
Reviewed by: 1st Lt. Elena Lee
Syndicated to: Region Hq, Florida Wing, Cadet Programs
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Civil Air Patrol, the longtime all-volunteer U.S. Air Force auxiliary, is the newest member of the Air Force’s Total Force, which consists of regular Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve, along with Air Force retired military and civilian employees. CAP, in its Total Force role, operates a fleet of 550 aircraft and performs about 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 78 lives annually. Civil Air Patrol’s 56,000 members nationwide also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. Its members additionally play a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to more than 24,000 young people currently participating in the CAP cadet program. Performing missions for America for the past 75 years, CAP received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2014 in honor of the heroic efforts of its World War II veterans. CAP also participates in Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans. Visit www.capvolunteernow.com for more information.
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