What do you do in your day job?
What attracted you to working with LONSAR?
I’m a Metals and Mining Research Analyst. In my previous role, I was outdoors a lot and that’s something I miss coming back to work in the UK. Volunteering as part of LONSAR allows me to get out and about, be it during searches or training.
As part of a Emergency Response Team whilst working in Australia, I was trained in disciplines such as firefighting, vehicle extrication, and rope rescue, as well as being a First Responder. Working as a team to save lives gave me a drive to help others and push myself to be a better person, something which attracted me to applying for a role within LONSAR.
Kat - Search Technician
Can you tell us about a search that you took part in that stands out in your memory?
I was on a search as part of an assist for another Lowland Rescue team, where a lady had been missing for over 24 hours. As the day wore on and we kept completing search areas with no clues or finds, it became evident that either she didn’t want to be found or the outcome wasn’t going to be a positive one. That was a hard search mentally as well as physically. We needed to maintain concentration throughout each search area. Spending ten hours on foot outdoors in freezing weather and willing yourself to push on to try find someone is tough but worth it.
What’s the most challenging part of being a search technician?
As with the previous question, the mental aspect is a challenge. Steeling yourself for the worst outcome but hoping for the best, as well as the mental exhaustion you can feel during and post-search from concentrating so hard. It’s so important to have a strong support network around you and fortunately for us at LONSAR, there are welfare systems in place, should members require them.
And the best part?
Loads! Being a part of something positive in the community, the teamwork and comradeship, being outdoors, constantly learning and developing new skills, and ultimately making a difference.
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