You have just joined this great organisation so firstly, welcome aboard. What can you do now? Well, you can simply go fishing or boating and by logging in with us know that your safety is being monitored. However, if you wish to be an active member, there are a number of avenues you can pursue. We have a great Members Liaison Team who will guide you through the South Australian Sea Rescue Squadron (SASRS) qualification “sea” and ensure you have plain sailing. A brief overview might help your decision making.
When you attend your first meeting, you will notice a number of things.
- An enjoyable social atmosphere
- A professionally run organisation
- A great camaraderie
- Most members have epaulettes signifying their position within the organisation, e.g. Trainee, Radio Operator, Operational, Skipper, Coxswain, and a number of others indicating executive or other roles.
Basic In-House Training
You will be expected to have your Short Range Operators Certificate of Proficiency for radio (SROCP) and have passed our Seamanship course before or while you are a trainee.
Other training is done as you progress through the various training Task books including the ‘Provide First Aid’ certificate course.
First cab off the rank is Radio Operator. This provides an introduction to SASRS and its operation and the knowledge and ability to assist in our Operations Centre. You will learn about Very High Frequency (VHF), Government Radio Network (GRN), Coast Radio Adelaide and Command radios systems. You will also be part of a team of volunteers who are trained in Search and Rescue procedures.
Having completed the Radio Operator training, the next step, if you are interested, is to become sea-going, i.e. Operational. Another task book is completed, giving hands-on boating experience and training to assist search and rescue operations. There is also a Volunteer Marine Rescue (VMR) Crew course to be satisfied. Note that these qualifications can be progressed concurrently.
When this is completed you can participate as a qualified crew member on weekend patrols, other callouts for assistance, and training exercises. You may then decide to increase your seagoing knowledge by qualifying in Coastal navigation through our in-house course.
If there are vacancies, you may be invited to join one of our rescue teams as a Search and Rescue crew member.
Each crew has as a minimum, a skipper, navigator/radio operator and two crew. These crews become involved in major search and rescue events.
Of course, you may like to drive boats. Skipper is the next step. This involves additional VMR run courses and another Task Book to be completed plus extensive training and practical testing to ensure our skippers are competent.
The Coxswain epaulette mentioned in the list above is an Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) qualification for commercial vessels <12 m. For those who have attained it, this epaulette is a recognition of the AMSA qualification. SASRS does not require a Coxswain’s qualification. At present, the qualification for skipper on any SASRS vessel is our internal training courses and assessments plus satisfactory completion of VMR Skipper course requirements.
It may be that you have some prior qualifications and relevant experience. Although you will have to go through the processes, your prior knowledge and experience will undoubtedly assist you to qualify more quickly. However to maintain standards and operate SASRS resources, you must have demonstrated your abilities by fulfilling the necessary training requirements.
Of course, you may find that you have other useful skills to assist with the organisational and administrative function of SASRS, e.g. accounting, IT, radio technician, radar, medical, mechanical, leadership etc. Any assistance is always greatly appreciated, fulfilling and rewarding.
For further information or clarification please contact a member of our Member Liaison Team who will answer or redirect your questions to the appropriate person.
For more information, contact our Members Liaison Team, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org