Top of the Hill
Boots and Blisters
Who's Who and New
On the Right Track
Business as Usual
|Top of the Hill||by Mike Dugger|
"Standard of care" is a phrase used to describe what is generally expected of people who are performing a particular function. Like it or not, it is by nature an ambiguous concept. The idea is that when our team responds to a mission, we are expected to have a "reasonable" level of skill in techniques used in search and rescue. Our standard of care requires knowledge of how to take care of ourselves in a wilderness setting, find areas to be searched and our way back to base camp, basic search techniques, and what to do (or NOT do) to the subject if found. Since the vast majority of our missions require hasty teams or litter evacuation teams, our standard of care could also be perceived to include litter packaging and hauling, and a good measure of physical fitness.
Rick Goodman, the state SAR resource officer, is required by law to certify search and rescue volunteers. The field certification that we now require of all members (present members by 12/97 and new members within a year of joining) is a way for Rick to document that SAR volunteers have the skills necessary to perform to the required standard of care for basic search and rescue. As long as we do what is "reasonable" and operate within our training, the state will defend us in any claims of liability resulting from a mission. Who decides whether or not our training is sufficient? Well, that depends. For topics included in the stateís field certification tests, the state decides. Therefore, when our members pass the tests on communications, gear and clothing, safety, search techniques, and map/compass, the state says they have the basic skills needed for search and rescue operations. For topics not included in field certification, we must hold ourselves to another standard. I submit that there are functions that Cibola SAR is expected to perform that are NOT part of the field certification skill set, and that we must document that our members have the knowledge to perform these tasks to the expected standard of care. It is ultimately the responsibility of CSARís leadership to insure that our members can perform to the standard of care that is expected of us.
Finally, a few words about participation. We should all be grateful for the hard work and dedication of a few people who perform dozens of jobs that keep this organization running smoothly, but sometimes go unnoticed. To name a few, CSAR must submit state incorporation papers, income tax returns, annual reports to United Way, and applications to participate in the United Way and Combined Federal Campaign fund drives EVERY YEAR. These efforts insure that we have the funds necessary to buy the team equipment needed to save lives, and that these funds are managed to the satisfaction of our benefactors. A heartfelt THANK YOU to all who make this happen, behind the scenes. Our real bottom line, though, is participation in missions. One of our fundamental ideals, carried into our new Member Guide from the origins of this team, is that "You are expected to give all SAR activities a high priority. Only your job, family, education (school), and church should interfere with your commitment to serve." Strong words, but for good reason. When we are called for a mission, a personís life is frequently at stake. The philosophy consistent with this statement is that we should participate whenever we can, not just when it's convenient. I have tremendous respect for our members who put service to our team high on their list of priorities. This does not mean responding to every mission, but whenever you can.
|Boots and Blisters||by Chuck Girven|
|Hike of the Month||South Piedra Lisa Trail to Del Agua Junction||0900, April 26-27, 1997|
|Trailhead:||South Piedra Lisa Parking area. See member guide for directions.|
|R.T. Distance: @6.0 miles||Elevation Min/Max: 7000/8200|
|Hiking Time @4.0 hours||Hazards: Slippery trail surface.|
|Topos: Forest Service map of the Sandias|
|Business as Usual||by Mary Girven|
Note: The URL above requires you to enter a username and password and is only accessible by certain website-registered members of CSAR.
|Bronze Boot||submitted by Chuck Girven|
|Who's Who and New||by Bob Ulibarri|
|Coming Attractions||by Chuck Girven|
|Public Relations||by Chuck Girven|
We have been invited to Honeywell's Kids Day on Thursday, April 24th from 8:30 to 11 am. They would like a PSAR Presentation (1 1/2 hours) for children 8 to 14 years old. We would be one of several programs offered on that day (Anti-Gang and Dare will be among the presenters).
Contact Marnie Boren or Chuck Girven if you have any questions or suggestions.
|On the Right Track||by Mickey Jojola|
|Member Spotlight: Mary Girven|
I was born in Phoenix, Arizona, the oldest of four children. We lived on my grandparent's farm until I was 9, then moved to Scottsdale. I was a true tomboy, spending as much of my time as possible roaming the countryside on horseback. I spent my teenage years in Tenessee, Indiana, and Illinois, and met Chuck during my Sophomore year (he was dating one of my friends at the time). Then during Junior year we began dating; he proposed during the Christmas break, Senior year; and we got married a year later.
I started going to the Community College nearby, but wasn't at all interested in anything they were offering, so I quit and worked several jobs until I was quite pregnant with our first child, Ben. Jessica arrived two years later, and I kept very busy being a mother and running a home-based Tailoring business. But eventually the children were busy in school and the sewing seemed tedious (and didn't pay nearly enough), so I decided to try college again, this time with a very clear idea of what I wanted and how I was going to go about getting it. I graduated with a 4.0 GPA and a job offer at Sandia National Laboratories. At the time, the company Chuck worked for was spiraling downhill so we decided to accept Sandia's offer and move to Albuquerque. That was a little over 8 years ago.
I started my career at Sandia in Drafting, but knew from work I'd done at school that what I really wanted to do was program, so I did at every opportunity. As soon as my clearance came through, I transferred into a Software Engineering organization where I designed and built a Configuration Management system for a program my organization was developing for the Air Force (ADSN). After ADSN was successfully delivered, I set up several other projects to use my CM system. Then about two years ago I was asked if I wanted to build a web site for another DOE project, Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Research and Development (CTBT R&D). I thought that sounded like fun (I'd been to the very first HyperText Conference in Seattle a couple of years earlier, right as the World Wide Web first started to take off). The CTBT R&D website has been a huge success and catapaulted me into developing several more related websites -- I've got more work than I can possibly do alone and am in the process of recruiting helpers.
I became involved with CSAR through my husband, Chuck. He sort of "volunteered" my services in developing the CSAR website. Since it's what I love doing, I didn't resist too much. And since I was spending so much time working on CSAR, and going to the meetings convinced me that I just might be able to be useful on searches, I decided to join last summer and became an active member in February. One of the nice benefits of being a member is that Chuck and I spend time together on CSAR projects and activities. It's also nice to feel like I'm contributing to the community through such a wonderful organization.
|Web News||by Mary Girven|
I haven't done much in the way of developing the ABQ-ROS website this month, but hope to get "into it" soon (you've heard that before). If anyone wants to help, PLEASE feel free to volunteer! Especially if you have experience with, or WANT to gain experience with, the WebSite Professional server. I'm more than swamped at work and NEVER seem to have any time that's not committed to something exceedingly important. It takes a concentrated effort and a block of free time to get over the first hurdles of developing under a new system. I have the software and some documentation (for Windows NT or 95) and would be happy to turn it over to an interested party! Unfortunately, if no one comes forward, it may be some time before we have more than static pages on the ABQ-ROS site.
Shhhh... The NMESC Notes article is taking the month off.
|I'll Drink to That!||by Chuck and Mary Girven|
The sun is not your only worry. Everything your body does from your heart beating to swatting at an annoying fly generates heat. Your body's metabolism can produce enough heat to raise your body's temperature 11/2° an hour. Combine this with carrying a heavy pack, radios, and scrambling up rough terrain and you've now become your own portable microwave oven.
There are several ways your body can release heat and cool itself. Sweating and evaporation are one way. Cooling occurs when sweat stands on your skin and slowly evaporates. A hiker who is acclimated to the hot surroundings may perspire as much as 2 quarts an hour. This will release a lot of internal heat just by evaporation. When you are used to the heat your body will sweat faster and you will lose less electrolytes, such as sodium and potassium (an important element in staying hydrated). Another form of heat loss is radiation. When you become overheated, the superficial blood vessels dilate, your heart rate increases and more blood is pumped to your skin's surface area.
One way to keep cool is to wear the proper clothing. In winter cotton is a bad choice because it doesn't wick moisture away from your skin, but in summer cotton is a good choice because it DOES keep the moisture near your skin. As air touches it it evaporates and keeps you cool, just like your house's evaporating cooler. Make sure you have some extra clothes to change into if the weather changes to prevent hypothermia. Using antihistamines, thyroid medication, alcohol, or amphetamines can hinder your body's ability to cool itself. Get plenty of rest. A military study has shown a direct relation between heat illnesses and lack of sleep or fatigue.
Most importantly is drink plenty of water. Most active people underestimate the amount of water they need. Don't wait until you're thirsty; by then it could be too late. Long distance runners can slow their running pace 2 percent for each 1 percent of body weight lost due to dehydration. Loosing 2 liters an hour is not uncommon when doing an intense exercise in hot conditions. The rate of which you lose fluid is directly related to the intensity of the exercise. Dehydration can raise your internal core temperature and create a lot of stress on your circulatory system. Marathon runners sometimes have to force themselves to drink in the last part of a race even though they could have lost more than 5 percent of their body weight.
Research as found that cold water is absorbed faster than warmwater. Keeping a water bottle wrapped in a jacket in your pack could help. Some people will fill their water bottle half full with water and put it on its side in the freezer until frozen, and then fill it the rest of the way up with cold water before a summer mission. Try to drink a quart of water before even starting out on the trail. Start drinking 4-6 ounces every 15-20 minutes into the search. Some studies have shown that most people only replace up to 2/3 of the fluids they have lost. So force your self to drink often. An easy way to tell if you're properly hydrated is the urine test. A clear to pale yellow means you're fine. A darker yellow means your dehydrated.
In addition to replacing fluids, you also need to add carbohydrates which can be included in sports drinks or high energy bars. After a couple of hours of strenuous exercise, your body's glycogen has almost been used up. That's when body fat begins to be used as fuel, but fat won't burn without carbohydrates. A 6-7 percent carbohydrate drink can actually be absorbed 30 percent faster than plain water. Anything over the 6-7 percent range can slow the absorption (Coke is about 11 percent carbohydrate). To find the percentage of carbohydrates in a drink, divide the amount carbos (in grams) by the amount of fluid in one serving in milliliters (an 8oz. serving is 236 milliliters) and then multiply by 100. About 90 minutes after beginning to hike start munching trail snacks. These will help to keep your blood glucose levels high and prevent exhaustion (glucose is needed by your brain to remain alert and functioning). When your energy stores are exhausted, it can take up to a full day to rebuild them.
We should all be familiar with the early warning symptons of heat illnesses. They are dizziness, grogginess, dry skin, rapid heart rate, chills, nausea, unsteadyness, and headaches. Dizziness is usually the first noticable symptom. No need to panic, just stop, consume liquids, get in the shade, and elevate your feet above your heart, and REST.
Remember to sample everything take with you before you go out. If it tastes like cardboard or worse you won't use it!! Encourage your team mates to take more drink breaks and watch for heat stroke, which can have up to an 80 percent mortality rate if left untreated. Take along plenty of water; it's better to have some left and not need it than run out and have miles to go. I hope this will illustrate how important staying hydrated is to all of us. The difference may be between being a rescuer or needing to be rescued!
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