Cal Fire/San Luis Obispo County rescue team gets state certification

Cal Fire/San Luis Obispo County’s 18-person interagency rescue team has received certification from a state agency, allowing it to respond to calls for assistance on incidents and complex rescue operations statewide, Cal Fire Battalion Chief Steve Crawford said today.

The team and its rescue vehicle have received certification from the California Emergency Management Agency — the only rescue team in the county to do so.

The certification also ensures the department is fully equipped to handle rescue incidents involving collapsed buildings, floods, landslides, ocean rescues and technical rope rescues.

In August, 12 chiefs from the Emergency Management Agency visited Cal Fire’s station 21, near the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport, and evaluated the rescue vehicle, its equipment, and the team’s training records.

The technical rescue team was formed with 10 members in 1998, Crawford said, and eventually expanded to its current size. There are two vacancies on the 20-person team.