Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
September 15, 2019, 06:53:12 PM
Home Help Login Register
News:

CAP Talk  |  Operations  |  Emergency Services & Operations  |  Topic: Future of Ground Teams
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Pages: [1] 2  All Send this topic Print
Author Topic: Future of Ground Teams  (Read 2863 times)
LSThiker
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,862
Unit: Earth

« on: March 11, 2019, 03:39:32 PM »

Let us talk the future of ground teams in CAP.  I tried searching for a similar topic but just came up with search results all from 2007.

At this point, I do not think it is no surprise that CAP is not a leader in ground SAR, which is fine since we have Air.  Our Ground Team materials are far out-of-date, no replacement for DF gear after L-tronics ceased in 2015-16 (?), etc.  From the "field perspective", it seems as though National is no longer really putting any emphasis on actual ground SAR (that may not be true, but seems to be the opinion of members).  That is, training at NESA, LESA, Michigan SAR, etc is going okay, but emphasis is not really provided for actual ground SAR.  That is okay if National is moving that direction.  Further, in the last 15 - 20 years, other organizations have become dominant local forces in ground SAR:  Team Rubicon, TEXSAR, New Jersey SAR, individual state task force 1s (or appropriate names), individual county SAR teams, etc.  Not too familiar with all of these, but you get the picture.  Some of these organizations are much more easily deployable than CAP--either due to requirements or the actual number of personnel ready to mobilize.  Overall, they are more well trained with up-to-date standards.  Calling one of these organizations is probably more practical for a missing person search than waiting for CAP, which will show up with cadets.  No demoralizing of cadets, but in the public eye, showing up with teens for SAR work may look "out-of-place" (I still stress cadet participation in ES).  A lot of these teams have equipment more appropriate for backcountry searches (4WD vs 15-passenger vans).

Our primary advantage is the Air Search component and our electronic search ability (DF) for aircraft.  Even then, amateur radio groups are building DF gear as hobby searching, which some of the aforementioned teams are picking up on. 

I understand that some of the aforementioned organizations do not exist in all areas of the country.  However, from a large metro perspective, which has a variation of all the aforementioned groups, there really is no need for Ground Teams.  UDF is still needed for the occasional ELT.  The last major general aviation aircraft accident that occurred in our area, happened in an area that was not readily reachable by even 4WD vehicles and required helicopter.  4WD rescue teams eventually made it to the crash site the next day. 

So, should CAP really focus our ground training on UDF primarily and leave GT work to more capable organizations?  Again, I understand that some parts of the country not all of these resources exist.

When was the last time a Ground Team type mission (as opposed to a UDF) was needed?  That is, a time when really a UDF team could not handle the search and not a time when an agency requested air operations.  I also do not mean:  "well in XX Wing, there are places where UDF could not go and possibly we would still need a GT but we have never actually been called on or it has been since early 2000 when last used". 

Also, would it be unexpected if large metro areas (such as Chicago, DC, Houston, LA, NYC, Atlanta, Orlando--not just the city proper but the metro squadrons as well) completely dropped GT style certification in favor of UDF certification.  (I am not meaning to not train in GT as a fun cadet experience to get into the woods or career exploration, but actual SAR work). 

Edit--Some synatx and grammar.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2019, 04:11:20 PM by LSThiker » Report to moderator   Logged
etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,795

« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2019, 04:11:37 PM »

Nail on the head for all of the above.

But don't get discouraged.

The future of non-aircrew folks on the ground is ____ .  Sorry, but I am not allowed to speak it in this forum at present. National will soon.  Its all good news for the future of non-aircrew members. :)
Report to moderator   Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO - ESO

sUAS MP - sUAS Instructor - sUAS Check Pilot
LSThiker
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,862
Unit: Earth

« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2019, 04:13:45 PM »

Nail on the head for all of the above.

But don't get discouraged.

The future of non-aircrew folks on the ground is ____ .  Sorry, but I am not allowed to speak it in this forum at present. National will soon.  Its all good news for the future of non-aircrew members. :)

I know where you are going.  I agree with getting cadets into that area.  However, I am strictly speaking Ground Team Member. 
Report to moderator   Logged
farsightusf2017
Recruit

Posts: 10

« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2019, 05:33:14 PM »

I can definitely see this after being a cadet in 2006-2015ish and being a senior. Lack of tasking and even in my current group there is barely anyone qualified in ground team/udf. We do have a country volunteer SAR organization that I have seen out and active a lot. Maybe there’s a way we can partner with these organizations?
Report to moderator   Logged
etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,795

« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2019, 06:13:15 PM »


 However, I am strictly speaking Ground Team Member.

I was as well.  I think you'll see "Ground Team Member" gradually redefined over the next few years. Morphing into something different, as other actual "First Responders"  get more and more advanced and don't need to call up CAP anymore for SAR. Except for the ELT sitting in a hangar. AFRCC will still have us doing that a few more years.

Report to moderator   Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO - ESO

sUAS MP - sUAS Instructor - sUAS Check Pilot
Gunsotsu
Forum Regular

Posts: 163

« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2019, 06:22:35 PM »

GTM training still has a place in terms of skill set and competency. In point of fact, with GTM being more difficult and broader in scope than UDF it offers a more useful skill set. GTM trained members can prosecute UDF missions, where the inverse in not true. The problem is NHQs inability to change with times and current utilization of that available assets and personnel.

GTM needs to be restructured to add more value to the program. There's no need to eliminate it, it just needs retooled to reflect the realities of today. Training needs to happen program wide to be of more usefulness in what will be the most likely scenario our organizations would face, that of Disaster Relief.  But that doesn't negate the value of having training in the ability to prosecute ground based wilderness SAR. There are wings and individual squadrons organization wide that receive calls for assistance not just for our air assets but also our ground personnel.

I'd rather see "Ground Teams" retooled basically like this:

1. GTM Basic- Eliminate antiquated GTM3/UDF tasks by incorporating NASAR SARTECH Level III to fill the gaps in current GTM3/UDF tasks, add CERT or PODS requirement, require first aid currency (this would be broadest in scope and tooled to cover DR missions)
2. GTM Advanced- GTM Basic, eliminate antiquated GTM2 and GTM1 tasks incorporate NASAR SARTECH Level II, require CPR/AED  currency
3. GTL- All of the above, add IS-5, IS-26, NASAR SARTECH Level I to fill the gaps, require both CERT and PODS

Report to moderator   Logged
etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,795

« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2019, 06:52:09 PM »


I'd rather see "Ground Teams" retooled basically like this:

1. GTM Basic- Eliminate antiquated GTM3/UDF tasks by incorporating NASAR SARTECH Level III to fill the gaps in current GTM3/UDF tasks, add CERT or PODS requirement, require first aid currency (this would be broadest in scope and tooled to cover DR missions)
2. GTM Advanced- GTM Basic, eliminate antiquated GTM2 and GTM1 tasks incorporate NASAR SARTECH Level II, require CPR/AED  currency
3. GTL- All of the above, add IS-5, IS-26, NASAR SARTECH Level I to fill the gaps, require both CERT and PODS

Lofty goals, but I'm just not convinced it would get us any more actual "business".

CAP aircrews can usually respond within a couple hours or so. Why? because we have enough old geezers like me who have free time. Physically I'm perfect for aircrew, but with my old knees, I would be a burden for ground team.

On a short notice missing person, or plane, in any given area ... the local police, sheriff, fire, etc., etc. will be on the scene immediately. Our local folks like that are fully equipped with helicopters, horseback teams, side by side vehicle teams, and usually find most anything long before it would even occur to think of calling CAP. We will always be an afterthought. Those people are always on duty.

My personal feeling is that anyone who really wants to be useful and 'active' in the areas of ground team searches, as in the traditional definitions, would probably be happier elsewhere. Many Wings train and train ... and never get a call.

BUT ... still good to train CADETS, so they have some exposure to the concepts and can use it later in life if they decide to be some type of First Responder in the future.
Report to moderator   Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO - ESO

sUAS MP - sUAS Instructor - sUAS Check Pilot
Holding Pattern
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471
Unit: Worry

« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2019, 06:54:47 PM »

Anyone bothered to send a survey out to the GTMs?

Because I sure haven't seen a survey, and I'm more than happy to contribute towards a modern curriculum.

Report to moderator   Logged
etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,795

« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2019, 06:59:38 PM »

Anyone bothered to send a survey out to the GTMs?

Because I sure haven't seen a survey, and I'm more than happy to contribute towards a modern curriculum.

Would be a great idea.

Another note:  The vast majority of CAP "saves" recently are from the Cell Phone and Radar Forensics Teams, who find the areas to search, and pass that info along to "local authorities /first responders" to go make the find.  I haven't seen any reports (might be a couple?) of the Forensics Teams sending the info to a local CAP unit to make the find.

Its the new CAP.  We are evolving.

Report to moderator   Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO - ESO

sUAS MP - sUAS Instructor - sUAS Check Pilot
Holding Pattern
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471
Unit: Worry

« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2019, 07:21:44 PM »

Anyone bothered to send a survey out to the GTMs?

Because I sure haven't seen a survey, and I'm more than happy to contribute towards a modern curriculum.

Would be a great idea.

Another note:  The vast majority of CAP "saves" recently are from the Cell Phone and Radar Forensics Teams, who find the areas to search, and pass that info along to "local authorities /first responders" to go make the find.  I haven't seen any reports (might be a couple?) of the Forensics Teams sending the info to a local CAP unit to make the find.

Its the new CAP.  We are evolving.

The new CAP feels a lot like the old one. Lots of rumors, few missions, plenty of politics.
Report to moderator   Logged
etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,795

« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2019, 07:33:42 PM »


The new CAP feels a lot like the old one .... few missions.


Put the buggy whips behind us, find our new place in the world, and the new CAP will be here for our grandkids. I'm optimistic.
Report to moderator   Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO - ESO

sUAS MP - sUAS Instructor - sUAS Check Pilot
Gunsotsu
Forum Regular

Posts: 163

« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2019, 07:57:47 PM »

Under the scheme I proposed, shifting GTMs primarily to DR is predicated on the very provable idea that a disaster event is going to massively disrupt everyday operations for the public. Schools and businesses would be closed, (see every hurricane, earthquake, etc. ever) so availability of ground personnel isn't at issue. CAP GTMs would deploy within their communities not as first response, but in the immediate aftermath. MER and SER have done this to great success in recent history. Fixed and sUAS assets would still be utilized based on need just as they are now. This isn't difficult, it just needs someone at NHQ to pull their head out of their fourth-point, knock the dust off the existing MOUs, and make it happen.     
Report to moderator   Logged
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time With Silver Clasp
*
Posts: 30,200

« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2019, 08:19:43 PM »

The new CAP feels a lot like the old one. Lots of rumors, few missions, plenty of politics.

Yep - nothing new under the sun except for the names on the page, and some of them aren't even so "new".

GT in CAP hasn't been a legitimate capability in probably the 20 years I've been in.  Lots of rhetoric, lots of talk about "new",
and then the majority of the ES ops are kept in the easy and safe air arena, guarded by the few, with GT being treated
as a stepchild at best.

The pervasive attitude is that it's something "cadets do", and until NHQ can make a case to change that attitude,
all the talk of SARTECH this and UAS that will remain that, talk.

Cadets cannot self-deploy or run missions, and are rarely are they in positions of authority in any real-world way.
Even cadet GTLS have to be 18, still require Senior Members on the team, and those SMs are the ones really in charge.

There are simply not enough adult members involved to respond on any scale, nor can most be gone more than a day or two during the week,
and CAP has shown pretty much every time that it does not have the resources($$), not planning in place for CAP members to be deploying to
DA's, resulting in member driving days to get there, showing up to no thought about where they will work, eat, etc., and the underlying
expectation is that the member(s) will pay most of their own freight.

CAP isn't even allowed to use its planes to transport teams to the AOR (Before you say "What? of course we are!" try
gin-ing up a sortie like that next SAREx. We can't even fund move IC's to eht ICP unless they are also pilots and will
"train along the way".

The simple fact of the matter is that CAP GTs are not trained, nor proficient to operate in the field under austere conditions for any prolonged period or in any meaningful way.

Even some of the more high-profile missions were really just exercises in camping next to some legit resource and missing a shower or two.

You don't start re-tuning, re-scaling, or talking about "futures" until you identify the market and the need.
An organizaiton like CAP doesn't start running down the block yelling "the new phone books are in, the new phone books are in"
just because it wants to be relevent.

It takes a concerted effort, a lot of man-hours, and a top-down approach with the actual players to
make anything happen.  This is why most SAR is local, for starters.

That means securing customer commitments and all levels, and providing what the customer wants, not
what you want to provide, even if what the customer wants is not exciting.

You also don't start wandering into other people's, fully-functional sandboxes and trying to
"be a factor" when you're not needed.  CERT, PODS, ARC, etc., are all fully functional and aren't interested
in CAP uniforms.  CAP's contact list?  Yes. The uniforms and all the overhead that comes with it?  No.
(despite the occasional anecdotal "success" that may have occurred in an Armageddon scenario).

Bottom line, if CAP is "defining" the missions and it's capabilities instead of "soliciting" the mission from its
customers and building capabilities around those, then it's just the same old circle.

BTW, while NHQ was out mailing STEM kits, this became a thing.

http://www.gofordrones.com/
TL:DR There's already an Uber for UAVs.





« Last Edit: March 11, 2019, 08:37:59 PM by Eclipse » Report to moderator   Logged


etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,795

« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2019, 08:45:46 PM »

Very good, well written post, Eclipse. :)

And you are correct about CAP trying to define its own missions. Some new ones coming up are being defined by customers. Hopefully we will succeed with these new missions. I'm optimistic.
Report to moderator   Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO - ESO

sUAS MP - sUAS Instructor - sUAS Check Pilot
Gunsotsu
Forum Regular

Posts: 163

« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2019, 09:00:36 PM »

And, as always right on cue, Eclipse shows up to interject his limited world view.
Report to moderator   Logged
Holding Pattern
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471
Unit: Worry

« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2019, 09:21:11 PM »


The new CAP feels a lot like the old one .... few missions.


Put the buggy whips behind us, find our new place in the world, and the new CAP will be here for our grandkids. I'm optimistic.

The problem is there ARE missions for others, just not for CAP because of the way CAP has defined itself.
Report to moderator   Logged
NovemberWhiskey
Member

Posts: 73
Unit: NER-NY-301

« Reply #16 on: March 11, 2019, 09:36:56 PM »

BTW, while NHQ was out mailing STEM kits, this became a thing.

http://www.gofordrones.com/
TL:DR There's already an Uber for UAVs.
No; it didn't, and no; there isn't.

https://www.alexcornell.com/gofor-drones-on-demand/
Report to moderator   Logged
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time With Silver Clasp
*
Posts: 30,200

« Reply #17 on: March 11, 2019, 10:29:08 PM »

BTW, while NHQ was out mailing STEM kits, this became a thing.

http://www.gofordrones.com/
TL:DR There's already an Uber for UAVs.
No; it didn't, and no; there isn't.

https://www.alexcornell.com/gofor-drones-on-demand/

Seriously, I bet you poke the bottom of all the See's candies.

You could have left that lay a little while longer...
Report to moderator   Logged


Stonewall
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 4,029

« Reply #18 on: March 11, 2019, 10:56:56 PM »

CAP ground teams don't have to go away if we don't want them to.  They still have their place and as far as I am concerned, will always have a place. Sure, it may be limited compared to the way it was for me over the past 32 years, but a lot of it has to do with your operating location. 

Someone mentioned "DC" as an area that wouldn't need a capable ground team at the ready. Well, I spent 15+ years in DCWG and we went on more missions than most wings during that time. I went on several missing person searches, a half dozen missing aircraft missions, about 100 non-distress ELTs/EPIRBs, and a few odds and ends. Why? Because DCWG was called all the time for missions in Virginia, Maryland, and even in DC proper.

An Ohio ground team was just praised for their efforts on a missing person search that ultimately turned into a "FIND" of a deceased person.  And yes, that team was mostly cadets.

People will ALWAYS go missing and CAP aircrews will always be called, but aircrews can't always launch, no matter how free "old geezers" are to respond a moment's notice.  Furthermore, no non-CAP ground teams should be better at ground-to-air coordination than CAP ground teams.  When a CAP aircraft is in the air directing ground teams to a search location or possible "tallyho" there should not be a team better at communicating and coordinating with that aircrew than CAP.

In Virginia there are dozens of volunteer SAR teams. They're just as goofy, just as old, just as willing, and no different in their capabilities than CAP. The only difference is we have cadets and the cadets I've led on ground teams weren't "whomever was home and available", they were trained, mature, and capable of meeting, but mostly exceeding, other SAR team's collective skills brought to the table.  I had cadets teaching at multiple region level SAR training events, so anyone who snubs their noses at cadets effectively serving on ground teams because "it's an adult's game" clearly haven't ventured beyond their small circle.

Bottom line: sure, we need to evolve a little. We need to modify "our way" (maybe our TTPs) to be more inline with national standards (I thought we did that already), and we need to ensure everyone involved is both physically and emotionally mature enough to bring something to the table. Lastly, we need to market ourselves.  No one is going to call us if they don't know who we are and our capabilities.

"Hey, let's call CAP and get their aircraft involved.  And ask for a ground team or two, too. Those chaps are pretty good at this whole SAR thing."

Yeah, it happens, and there's no reason it has to stop happening.

Just because it's not happening in your zip code, doesn't mean it's not happening in others.
Report to moderator   Logged
Gunsotsu
Forum Regular

Posts: 163

« Reply #19 on: March 11, 2019, 11:03:46 PM »

CAP ground teams don't have to go away if we don't want them to.  They still have their place and as far as I am concerned, will always have a place. Sure, it may be limited compared to the way it was for me over the past 32 years, but a lot of it has to do with your operating location. 

Someone mentioned "DC" as an area that wouldn't need a capable ground team at the ready. Well, I spent 15+ years in DCWG and we went on more missions than most wings during that time. I went on several missing person searches, a half dozen missing aircraft missions, about 100 non-distress ELTs/EPIRBs, and a few odds and ends. Why? Because DCWG was called all the time for missions in Virginia, Maryland, and even in DC proper.

An Ohio ground team was just praised for their efforts on a missing person search that ultimately turned into a "FIND" of a deceased person.  And yes, that team was mostly cadets.

People will ALWAYS go missing and CAP aircrews will always be called, but aircrews can't always launch, no matter how free "old geezers" are to respond a moment's notice.  Furthermore, no non-CAP ground teams should be better at ground-to-air coordination than CAP ground teams.  When a CAP aircraft is in the air directing ground teams to a search location or possible "tallyho" there should not be a team better at communicating and coordinating with that aircrew than CAP.

In Virginia there are dozens of volunteer SAR teams. They're just as goofy, just as old, just as willing, and no different in their capabilities than CAP. The only difference is we have cadets and the cadets I've led on ground teams weren't "whomever was home and available", they were trained, mature, and capable of meeting, but mostly exceeding, other SAR team's collective skills brought to the table.  I had cadets teaching at multiple region level SAR training events, so anyone who snubs their noses at cadets effectively serving on ground teams because "it's an adult's game" clearly haven't ventured beyond their small circle.

Bottom line: sure, we need to evolve a little. We need to modify "our way" (maybe our TTPs) to be more inline with national standards (I thought we did that already), and we need to ensure everyone involved is both physically and emotionally mature enough to bring something to the table. Lastly, we need to market ourselves.  No one is going to call us if they don't know who we are and our capabilities.

"Hey, let's call CAP and get their aircraft involved.  And ask for a ground team or two, too. Those chaps are pretty good at this whole SAR thing."

Yeah, it happens, and there's no reason it has to stop happening.

Just because it's not happening in your zip code, doesn't mean it's not happening in others.

Report to moderator   Logged
Pages: [1] 2  All Send this topic Print 
CAP Talk  |  Operations  |  Emergency Services & Operations  |  Topic: Future of Ground Teams
 


Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP SMF 2.0.15 | SMF © 2017, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.076 seconds with 26 queries.