Role statement - Volunteer Search and Rescue Organisations

Search and Rescue operations are often supported by volunteer emergency search and rescue organisations. There are a number of volunteer emergency land, water and transport search and rescue organisations who are specialised and/or provide search and rescue support services in localised areas of the State, including:

  • Bush Search and Rescue Victoria
  • approved units of the Victoria State Emergency Service for Vertical Rescue/Swift Water Rescue
  • approved units of Country Fire Authority for Vertical Rescue
  • Oscar One (CFA Bendigo) for Mine Rescue 
  • Echuca Moama Search and Rescue Squad (land and road) 
  • Shepparton Search and Rescue Squad (land, water and road)
  • Independent Alpine Resorts Board Ski Patrols
  • Australian Volunteer Coast Guard (AVCG) Units
  • EMV Accredited volunteer Marine / Land Search & Rescue Units 


Critical task alignment / activity source



Broadening community awareness and preparedness to minimise the impact of an emergency on the community



Engage with communities about volunteer agencies capabilities and capacity in an emergency

1.1, 1.2, 2.1


Provision of advice, information, and assistance to volunteer agencies and the community in relation to emergency management principles and practice

1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 4.5, 4.6


Provision of information and education displays at tradeshows and community events

2.1, 4.5


Provision of training programs (such as Basic First Aid) to people affected by emergencies in support of lead agencies

1.4, 3.2


Response (including Relief)


Support agency to VicPol for land, water and transport search and rescue

3.2, 12.1, 12.3


Volunteer Search and Rescue Organisations are supported by CFA and VICSES who also provide volunteer emergency workers for emergency search and rescue response operations



Provision of specialised search and rescue equipment

10.1, 10.3, 10.4


Further information about specific roles/services provided can be obtained by contacting Victoria Water Police/Search and Rescue Squad via the Rescue Co-ordination Centre (staffed 24/7) at Williamstown

3.2, 3.3




For recovery activities, refer directly to the agency for further information.


Assurance and Learning


For assurance and learning activities, refer directly to the agency for further information.