Sunny Side with Cindy: Meeting the heroes behind Washington County search and rescue operations

SOUTHERN UTAH — In her new show “Sunny Side with Cindy,” Sunny 101.5 morning show host Cindy Olson celebrates the people who make our community a better place to live.

Olson recently visited the Washington County Sheriff’s Office to learn more about search and rescue operations from Chief Deputy Nate Brooksby and Sgt. Darrell Cashin. Responding to emergencies in the rugged backcountry requires courage, intensive training and relentless dedication.

Learn more about Washington County search and rescue operations in this episode of “Sunny Side with Cindy” in the media player above.

The sheriff’s office oversees all search and rescue operations in Washington County. They respond to calls ranging from lost hikers to ATV accidents in canyons, forests, lakes and even on top of mountains. Local police departments also utilize search and rescue services when they need additional resources, such as to locate a missing child.

There are ground, high-angle, swift water, dive and medical rescue teams operating beneath the umbrella of search and rescue.

“A lot of these places people get (injured in) are inaccessible to your normal ambulance,” Cashin said. “That’s why we have these teams, to try and help keep them stable until we can get them extracted out.”

About 80 men and women from across Washington County serve on a strictly volunteer basis, lending their time, skills and resources. Brooksby said many team members bring their own offroad vehicles to assist with rescues in remote areas.

“We really appreciate our volunteers,” he added. “We couldn’t do it without them.”

If you’re adventuring beyond cell phone range, make sure to tell someone where you’re going and when you expect to be back. Give them a description of your vehicle so they can call for help and quickly provide important information to the search team if you don’t return. With expansive wilderness throughout the area, having a starting point is crucial to a successful rescue operation.

To submit a volunteer application or learn how to support local search and rescue efforts, visit the Washington County Sheriff’s Office website.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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