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CAP Completes Intensive Training

February 19, 2024

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Close to 60 South Dakota Wing members completed a productive day of training for search and rescue and aerial photography Feb 17, from mission bases in Spearfish and Sioux Falls.  

Members from Minnehaha County Emergency Operations were guests of Civil Air Patrol observing this weekend’s Sioux Falls-area training. In addition to refreshing the skills of experienced members, several new members were able to learn the basics of search techniques, to be applied in future operational missions. 

“Familiarity with the capabilities of Civil Air Patrol can be helpful for when South Dakota Wing works with other agencies on future rescue missions,” said Col. Michael Marek, South Dakota wing commander. “We anticipate the possibility of joint, inter-agency training exercises in the future.”

Training sorties at the two locations included airborne photography, simulated missing persons searches, and using direction-finding radio equipment to locate a training aircraft emergency locator beacon.

“As part of this exercise, we employed software for live tracking of the search teams’ locations,” said Lt. Jacob Roth, air operations branch director for the Sioux Falls base. “It has the potential to greatly facilitate situational awareness and enhance both the efficiency and efficacy of our operations.”

The next South Dakota Wing operational training event will be a ground team academy in the Black Hills in March.

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