Dartmoor Search and Rescue exists to help the police and other related rescue organisations to locate, render appropriate assistance and evacuate missing persons to a place of safety.
Our services are particular in demand in situations where weather conditions are poor and the location of the missing person is unknown. All team members are highly trained in a variety of skills ranging from advanced first aid through to navigation, search techniques and radio operation.
DSRT Tavistock is part of Peninsular Mountain and Cave Rescue Association (PenMaCRA) which encompasses the search & rescue teams of the South West, all of which form part of Mountain Rescue (England and Wales).
Dartmoor is served by four sister teams based in Tavistock, Ashburton, Okehampton and Plymouth. However, we often find our services are required by the Police throughout all of Devon and Cornwall.
The Dartmoor Rescue Group was formed in Tavistock in April 1968, to help the Police provide an efficient search and rescue service on Dartmoor and other remote places. At first we were all one charity, but this changed a several years ago when we became self governing and each team was renamed Dartmoor Search and Rescue Team followed by the name of its home base.
The Dartmoor Rescue Group still exists but is now an executive committee whose primary role is to oversee the liaison between the four sister teams.
There are many other emergency services with which we work. These include HM Coastguard, Ambulance Service, Fire Service and even the RNLI.
Each one of these resources is a great help and we continue to build an inter agency approach to missing persons searches in the South West.
In good weather an aircraft like the Air Ambulance or National Police Air Service helicopter will very often be used to evacuate an injured person. The Police helicopter may also be used for searching. However the weather on Dartmoor can sometimes make searching by helicopter impossible. The only solution then is people (and dogs) on the ground, which is why DSRT callouts are often on misty, dark nights when it’s raining!