Nevada Search and Rescue

Search, and Rescue (SAR) in Nevada is handled at the local level and is the responsibility of the County Sheriff's Office. The local SAR units provide aid to people who may have become lost or are in distress or imminent danger. The general field of search and rescue has most of its members who volunteer their time and skills to their communities. Many SAR teams have specialty units (such as Mounted SAR, Swift-water Rescue, Alpine Rescue, Drone Teams, etc.) to provide specific rescue capabilities for their areas, usually determined by the type of terrain in their response areas. 

Nevada is a state in which residents and visitors from all over the world come to and enjoy a wide variety of outdoor recreation. Activities such as camping, hiking, swimming, watersports, and skiing are just a few of the activities Nevada is known for. However, these activities may result in the need to find people who become lost, stuck in the wilderness, or injured. The primary focus of SAR teams is life safety.

DEM helps promote and assist with SAR activities when requested by the local jurisdiction performing the search with the coordination of resources and requesting assets from other local, state, and federal partners to assist jurisdictions with their search activities. 

Nevada Board of Search and Rescue

The Board for Search and Rescue was established by the Nevada Revised Statutes under NRS 414.170 in 1983. Members of the Board are appointed by the Chief, Nevada Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and the board composition is guided by statutory requirements. It includes:

  • One member representing the Nevada Wing of the Civil Defense Air Patrol  
  • One member from the Nevada National Guard 
  • Four members from the Nevada Sheriffs and Chiefs Association 
  • One member from the Health Division 
  • One member from the Division of Forestry 
  • A Search and Rescue representative belonging to a law enforcement agency, and 
  • One member from the Nevada Fire Chief’s Association 

The term of appointment is two years. The Board meets quarterly to discuss search and rescue issues such as training and exercise activities, format policy related to search and rescue, establishes and approves standards for personnel and courses, and reviews operations to provide recommendations for operational improvements statewide.

The Coordinator for Search and Rescue appoints members and manages the Training Committee. The Training Committee establishes recommendations for organizations specializing in search and rescue, and certify organizations which meet those recommendations at the appropriate level.

SAR Information

Search and Rescue Plan

Search and Rescue Statistics Entry Form

Public Meeting Notification