Note: This ACT is available as a pdf download here.
Search and Rescue
NMSA 1978, 24-15A-1 to 24-15A-6, et seq.
New Mexico Department of Public Safety
PO Box 1628, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504-1628
New Mexico Search and Rescue
Law and State SAR Plan
Table of Contents
Search and Rescue Act (Law)
State SAR Plan
VI. SAR Authorities and SAR Responsibilities
VII. System of Certification
VIII. System of Resource Recognition
IX. Search and Rescue Volunteers
Diagram, SAR Notification Flow Chart
New Mexico Department of Public Safety, PO Box 1628
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504-1628
THE SEARCH AND RESCUE ACT (LAW)
Search and Rescue
24-15A-1. Short title.
This act (24-15-1 to 24-15A-6 NMSA 1978) may be cited as the "Search and Rescue Act".
24-15A-2. Purpose of act.
It is the purpose of the Search and Rescue Act [24-15A-1 to 24-15A-6 NMSA 1978]:
A. to prepare, organize and coordinate efforts of federal, state and local governmental agencies and volunteer organizations for prompt and efficient search, location, rescue, recovery, care and treatment of persons lost, entrapped or in physical danger,
B. to further coordinate national and state Search and Rescue agreements; and
C. to develop and administer a statewide plan for search and rescue.
A. As used in the Search and Rescue Act [24-16A-1 to 24-15A-6 NMSA 1978]:
B. “Search and Rescue” or “SAR” means the employment, coordination and utilization of available resources and personnel in locating, relieving the distress and preserving the lives of and removing survivors from the site of a disaster, emergency or hazard to a place of safety in the care of lost, stranded, entrapped or injured persons;
C. “Board” means the State Search and Rescue Review Board;
D. “AFRCC” means the air force rescue coordination center, which is the federal agency responsible for coordinating federal SAR activities within the inland region pursuant to the national Search and Rescue Plan;
E. “State SAR Control Agency” means the department of public safety;
F. “State SAR Mission Initiator” means the New Mexico State Police officer so appointed and SAR trained;
G. “State SAR Resource Officer” means the official located within the department of public safety responsible for coordinating SAR resources and administering the State SAR Plan;
H. “Field Coordinator” means a person certified by the Board with special training and expertise responsible for the efficient organization and conduction of a SAR mission;
I. “Civil Air Patrol” means the Civil Air Patrol division of the department of military affairs and an air force auxiliary responsible for coordinating air searches which are authorized by the AFRCC;
J. “Mission” means each separate group effort in the employment, direction and guidance of personnel and facilities in searching for and rendering aid to persons lost or in distress;
K. “Chief” means the chief of the New Mexico State Police division of the department of public safety; and
L. “Director” means the director of the technical and emergency support division of the department of public safety.
24-15A-4. State Search and Rescue Resource Officer; position is created:
The position of “State Search and Rescue Resource Officer” is created within the department of public safety.
A. The State Search and Rescue Resource Officer shall be a noncommissioned employee.
B. The State Search and Rescue Resource Officer shall be the chief administrator of the State Search and Rescue Plan.
24-15A-5. State Search and Rescue Resource Officer; powers and duties:
The State Search and Rescue Resource Officer shall, with the approval of the director:
A. compile, maintain and disseminate an inventory of resources available in the state;
B. compile, maintain and disseminate rosters of persons, agencies and organizations available for search and rescue purposes;
C. develop a training program for the certification of search and rescue instructors and, by regulation, adopt a system of certification of search and rescue persons;
D. act as contact agent for the state in search and rescue matters;
E. develop and periodically review requirements for insurance coverage for search and rescue volunteers;
F. coordinate the training of Mission Initiators and Field Coordinators; and
G. maintain records of missions at the state SAR Control Agency.
24-15A-6. State Search and Rescue Review Board created; membership; duties and responsibilities; terms:
A. There is created a policy advisory committee to be known as the “State Search and Rescue Review Board”, whose duty it is to evaluate the operation of the New Mexico Search and Rescue Plan; evaluate problems of specific missions; and make Findings of fact and recommendations to the chief, director and other appropriate authorities. The Board shall consist of the State Search and Rescue Resource Officer, who shall be a nonvoting member and seven members appointed by the governor as follows:
(a) the Secretary of Public Safety or his designee;
(b) the Secretary of Health and Environment or his designee;
(c) a representative of the Civil Air Patrol division of the Department of Military Affairs;
(d) a representative of the New Mexico Emergency Services Council;
(e) a member certified as a search and rescue person;
(f) a member of the New Mexico Sheriffs Association;
(g) the chief of the New Mexico State Police Division of the Department of Public Safety; and
(h) a member or the general public who shall act as chairman of the Board and who shall vote only in case of a tie.
B. The Board shall have the duty and responsibility to:
(a) meet at least quarterly or more frequently at the call of the chairman;
(b) evaluate the operation and effectiveness of the State SAR Plan and make recommendations to the director;
(c) evaluate the operational effectiveness or specific missions, make Findings of fact and recommendations to the chief and other appropriate authorities for the elimination of problems and the improvement of overall conduct of the mission;
(d) hold hearings and invite individuals to appear and testify before the Board, and reimburse such witnesses for travel expenses incurred;
(e) prepare a report for the Attorney General's office in cases of victim hospitalization or death; and
(f) with the approval of the chief, certify Field Coordinators and confirm certification of SAR persons.
C. The governor shall appoint the seven appointed members for staggered terms of three years each made in such a manner that the terms of not more than three members expire on January 1 or 1979, 1980 and 1981. Thereafter, appointments shall be made so that the terms or not more than three members expire on January 1 of each year. Vacancies shall be filled by appointment by the governor for the unexpired term. Any member of the Board who misses more than two consecutive meetings shall automatically be removed as a member or the Board.
Search and Rescue
January 1, 1996
New Mexico Department of Public Safety
PO Box 1628, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504-1628
SEARCH AND RESCUE PLAN
The New Mexico Search and Rescue (SAR) Plan is adopted pursuant to the authority contained in the SAR Act, NMSA 1978, § 24-15A-1, et seq.
In accordance with the SAR Act as set forth in NMSA 1978, § 24-15A-1, et seq., it is the purpose of this Plan to effectuate the Legislative intent and authorization embodied in the SAR Act in the manner set forth in the terms and conditions of this Plan. This Plan puts in to practice the Governor's order stating that the National Interagency Incident Management System (NIIMS) Incident Command System (ICS) is the state standard by Executive Order. Accordingly, all SAR incidents in the state of New Mexico must be managed by the Incident Command System, thus providing the most comprehensive life-saving effort possible from those entities involved.
In addition to the definitions set forth in the SAR Act, NMSA 1978, 24-15A-1, et seq., in section I, the following terms are defined:
A. “Agency Administrator” is the Chief of the New Mexico State Police. The Chief may appoint a designee such as the SAR Resource Officer.
B. “Area Commander” means a Field Coordinator appointed by the SAR Review Board, with the approval of the Chief, to oversee the management of single or multiple incidents. The Area Commander will keep the Agency Administrator, or his/her designee, informed on major incident(s) developments during the operational phase of a SAR incident.
C. “Branch Director” is tasked with management at the organizational level having functional or geographic responsibility for major parts of the incident. The Branch Director reports to his/her respective Section Chief.
D. “Incident Command System (ICS)” means a standardized on-scene emergency management concept specifically designed to allow its user(s) to perform under an integrated organizational structure, without being hindered by the demands of single or multiple incidents and/or, by jurisdictional boundaries.
E. “Incident Commander” is the title within the Incident Command System given to the Field Coordinator who is officially assigned a SAR incident.
F. “Incident Number” is the official number designation assigned to each properly initiated mission.
G. “Incident Report” means the document or documents which are specified by the New Mexico Department of Public Safety.
H. “Section Chief” has the responsibility for a major functional area of the incident, e.g., Operations, Planning, Logistics, Finance/Administration. The Section Chief reports directly to the Incident Commander.
I. “SAR Volunteer or SAR Person” is a person who volunteers time and equipment to aid in SAR incidents or other emergencies that might fall under the SAR Act. [A SAR volunteer offer of services or equipment, may or may not be accepted by the Incident Commander (assigned Field Coordinator) in charge of SAR incident. If accepted, the SAR volunteer must check in to the incident, take direction from the Incident Commander as to his/her participation during the incident, and check out of the incident when the volunteer services are no longer needed, or the volunteer chooses not to remain a SAR Volunteer as defined under this Plan.]
J. “SAR Resource Directory” is a publication by the SAR Resource Officer that includes resources that may be utilized on SAR incidents. This document is supplied to all Field Coordinators and others that may be involved in notifying SAR resources during SAR incidents.
K. “State Police District” means those geographic areas as defined by the New Mexico State Police as State Police Districts.
A. The New Mexico SAR Plan, hereinafter referred to as the State SAR Plan, incorporates operations within a total incident effort that includes search, rescue, and recovery of injured or lost subjects. The state SAR organization consists of:
1. the New Mexico Department of Public Safety, which incorporates a network of Mission Initiators and Field Coordinators;
2. the state SAR Resource Officer;
3. the state SAR Review Board; and
4. those persons or entities reasonably necessary to resolve a SAR Incident.
A. The Plan incorporates agreements which include, but are not limited to, the following:
1. an agreement between the US Air Force Director of Operations, Air Combat Command, and the state of New Mexico, in support of the National Search and Rescue Plan (see Appendix A).
VI. SAR AUTHORITIES AND SAR RESPONSIBILITIES
A. The New Mexico Department of Public Safety:
1. Has the authority and responsibility for all SAR incidents in the State of New Mexico, pursuant to the New Mexico SAR Act, NMSA 1978, §24-15A-1, et seq., the SAR agreement with the US Air Force Director of Operations Air Combat Command in support of the National SAR Plan, SAR agreements with the federal, state and local entities, and Indian tribes within the state. All SAR incidents managed by the State of New Mexico shall conform with the State SAR Plan.
2. Will designate a minimum of two (2) SAR trained State Police Officers in each State Police District as SAR Mission Initiators. Their duties are as follows.
a. The Mission Initiator (or if no Mission Initiator is available the investigating Field Coordinator) will be responsible for investigating potential SAR situations [not involving crashed, missing or overdue Aircraft, Emergency Location Transmitter (ELT) or Personal Location Beacon (PLB)]. If a SAR mission is deemed advisable, the Plan shall be put into effect by the investigating Mission Initiator by assigning an Incident Number to a Field Coordinator.
b. At the discretion of the State Police District supervisor, the Mission Initiator may be requested to act as a liaison between field operations and the State Police District.
(1) A Mission Initiator, or if a Mission Initiator is not available an Area Commander, can suspend or terminate the SAR Incident, in the following circumstances:
(a) Suspension - A SAR incident may be suspended by the District Mission Initiator after consulting with the Incident Commander when:
(i) Appropriate resources have been utilized in the search effort, all probable areas have been searched with a reasonable cumulative Probability of Detection (POD) factor, and there are no new clues or leads to be investigated, which in the opinion of the Incident Commander, with concurrence of the New Mexico Department of Public Safety, warrant no further search activity, or
(ii) Physical constraints, including natural phenomenon, no longer reasonably permit opportunity for continuing the incident.
(b) Termination - A state SAR Incident will be terminated by a Mission Initiator, or if a Mission Initiator is not available an Area Commander when:
(i) communications have been received from the Incident Commander that the subject(s) have been located and/or rescued and all personnel assigned the incident have had reasonable time to return home or work place, or
(ii) it is determined that the incident operations should not be further conducted in the state of New Mexico, or
(iii) there is notification that an incident was initiated erroneously.
(2) Documentation - All written reports and related correspondence concerning a SAR incident will be forwarded to the New Mexico Department of Public Safety in Santa Fe, to the attention of the state SAR Resource Officer within 15 days after the date of suspension or termination of the SAR incident.
3. Shall have State Police Districts and State Police Headquarters adhere to the following.
a. State Police Districts;
(1) will maintain a current roster supplied by the state SAR Resource Officer, of Mission Initiators, Field Coordinators, Area Commanders, list of Incident Numbers, and a current copy of the State SAR Plan,
(2) upon notification of a possible SAR situation [one not involving crashed or missing (or overdue) Aircraft, ELTs, or PLBs], the State Police District will as soon as feasible notify a Mission Initiator, or in the absence of a Mission Initiator, a Field Coordinator. At the request of the Mission Initiator, or in the absence of a Mission Initiator a Field Coordinator, the District will issue an Incident Number, which shall be the last two digits of the year, State Police District number, and number of SAR incidents in that District that calendar year plus one,
(3) as soon as possible the State Police District Communication Specialist (radio dispatcher) will notify the on-call Area Commander and brief him or her on the incident. A teletype with information about the incident will be sent to State Police Headquarters as well as other State Police Districts that could be involved in the SAR incident. The District will also make periodic reports to State Police Headquarters about the SAR Incident progress, and
(4) upon notification of ANY SAR incident involving a crashed, missing (or overdue) aircraft, ELT, or PLB, the District will as soon as feasible notify and relay all information about the incident to State Police Headquarters in Santa Fe.
b. Headquarters of the New Mexico State Police;
(1) will maintain a current list supplied by the state SAR Resource Officer, of Area Commanders and a list of Incident Numbers for any Incident that involves an aircraft, ELT or PLB,
(2) upon notification of a situation involving any crashed, missing (or overdue) aircraft, ELT, or PLB's, the State Police Headquarters will as soon as feasible notify an Area Commander and issue him or her an Incident Number. The Incident Number, which shall be; (a) the last two digits of the year, (b) Headquarters identification number (20), and, (c) the number of air incident(s) issued in the state that calendar year plus one, and
(3) Headquarters will alert other State Police Districts, at the request of the Area Commander, where there may be a possibility that the missing (or overdue) aircraft, ELT or PLB may be located.
4. Shall train a cadre of volunteer Field Coordinators. Their duties are as follows:
a. When a Field Coordinator accepts the assignment of an SAR incident he/she will become the “Incident Commander” for that SAR incident and is responsible for initiating, alerting, assigning, and directing all SAR resources participating on the incident.
b. A Field Coordinator when contacted by a State Police District office may perform Mission Initiator duties if the State Police District, where the Incident is located, can not locate a Mission Initiator within a reasonable amount of time,
c. An Incident Commander will establish an “Incident Base” which will be the principal base of field operations. Incident Base will be established at an accessible area within reasonable proximity to the primary search or rescue area where resources can be staged, assigned, dispatched, and where there is adequate communication to a State Police District office.
d. Missing Aircraft, ELT, and PLB incidents.
(1) The assigned Incident Commander on all aircraft, ELT, or PLB incidents must have met “air” SAR training standards developed by the SAR Resource Officer.
(2) If the use of any air resources are contemplated the Incident Commander must appoint a certified Air Operations Branch Director who shall have operational control of all air resources assigned to the incident pursuant to ICS management guidelines. (If the Incident Commander is certified as an Air Operations Branch Director and has not appointed an Operations Section Chief, he or she can fill both the roll of the Incident Commander and the Air Operations Branch Director until such time as a Operation Section has been assigned to the incident.)
(3) The Incident Base location for a missing aircraft, ELT, or PLB should be chosen close to the center of the aircraft line of travel within or across the state where search air resources can be located directed and assigned. In the case of an ELT or PLB the location should be in close proximity to the suspected location of the ELT or PLB signal location.
e. Water Incidents.
(1) If a SAR Field Coordinator is asked to be the Incident Commander on an incident that may involve a possible drowning, he/she will, notify State Police Headquarters and request the State Police Dive Team Commander or his designee to contact the SAR Incident Commander as soon as possible. When contacted, the SAR Incident Commander will request that one of the dive team members, if one is-not already on scene, respond to the Incident Base as soon as feasible. Until the State Police Dive representative arrives at the Incident Base, the SAR Incident Commander will manage the SAR incident.
(2) When the State Police Dive Team representative arrives at the Incident Base, or if on scene when the SAR Incident Commander arrives, the State Police Dive Team Leader will be in charge of all activity on or under water and the SAR Field Coordinator will be in charge of all other search areas. The Field Coordinator and the State Police Dive Team Leader will operate the incident together as an ICS Unified Command pursuant to ICS management guidelines.
(3) If it is determined that the State Police Dive Team Leader needs Volunteer SAR resources for utilization on or under water they will be requested though the SAR Field Coordinator and assigned to the State Police Dive Team Leader after they have been checked in at the Incident Base.
f. For radio communications purposes, the call sign to be used on all SAR Incidents will be the incident name, or other designator, added to the term “Base”. There can only be one “Base” per SAR incident,
g. Unless relieved by another Field Coordinator, the Field Coordinator acting as the Incident Commander or a member of the Unified Command will remain at the Incident Base until the incident has been suspended or terminated,
h. The Field coordinator shall manage the SAR incident in accordance with the SAR training provided by the New Mexico Department of Public Safety under this Plan.
i. Prior to deactivating an Incident Base, shall ensure all SAR resources under his or her command have checked out at the Incident Base in person, by telephone or radio.
j. If acting as the Incident Commander when an Incident was suspended or terminated, the Field Coordinator will be consider the Field Coordinator of record and will submit an Incident Report to the SAR Resource Officer within fifteen (15) days of the suspension or termination date of the Incident.
k. If acting as an Incident Commander other than when the Incident was suspended or terminated, he/she will turn over any and all information concerning the incident, written or recorded, to the Incident Commander of record as soon as possible after their activation as an Incident Commander was terminated.
l. If a Field Coordinator has been appointed by the SAR Review Board as an "Area Commander" he/she has the additional responsibility to:
(1) assign a Field Coordinator, who has met air SAR training standards to be the Incident Commander when notified of an air incident by State Police Headquarters.
(2) locate and assign Field Coordinators to a SAR incident if the local State Police District office can not locate a local Field Coordinator, and/or
(3) replace a Field Coordinator as the Incident Commander if the SAR incident is considered by the Area Commander to be of a magnitude that requires a more experienced or trained Field Coordinator,
(4) suspend and terminate SAR incidents when a Mission Initiator is not available.
m. Shall be responsible for all other duties that may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this Plan.
5. The New Mexico State Police will be the final authority and will resolve all disputes during the operational phase of the SAR incident.
6. All personnel matters involving any person operating under this plan will be resolved by, and at the discretion of the Chief of the New Mexico State Police.
B. State of New Mexico.
1. SAR Persons, SAR Volunteers, and Field Coordinators who qualify under the definition section of this Plan or the SAR Act will become a temporary “public employee” as defined in the Tort Claims Act, NMSA 1978, § 41-4-1, et seq., without compensation.
2. Temporary status ceases upon suspension or termination of the incident, or if a SAR Person, SAR Volunteer, or Field Coordinator is no longer assigned to the Incident by the Incident Commander or the Incident Commander's staff, or chooses to no longer volunteer their services to the SAR Incident. SAR Persons, SAR Volunteers and Field Coordinators are NOT considered state employees other than for purposes of the Tort Claims Act.
VII. SYSTEM OF CERTIFICATION
A. Mission Initiator
1. Mission Initiator must be;
a. a duly commissioned New Mexico State Police Officer,
b. properly SAR trained, and
c. appointed to the position by the Chief.
B. Certified Field Coordinator
1. To be a Certified Field Coordinator an applicant must;
a. file an application with the New Mexico Department of Public Safety,
b. receive a positive recommendation from the candidate's home State Police District Captain,
c. successfully complete a SAR management course required by the New Mexico Department of Public Safety, and
d. receive final approval for certification from the SAR Review Board and the Chief.
C. Certified SAR Volunteer
1. To become a Certified SAR Volunteer an applicant must;
a. be a current member of a SAR Recognized resource,
b. fill out a questionnaire supplied by the SAR Resource Officer, and
c. meet criteria established by the Chief of the New Mexico State Police.
E. Certified SAR ICS General Staff personnel (including Branch Directors).
1. An applicant wishing to become Certified as a member of the ICS General Staff or an ICS Branch Director must,
a. fill out a questionnaire supplied by the SAR Resource Officer, and
b. meet criteria established by the Chief of the New Mexico State Police.
VIll. SYSTEM OF RESOURCE RECOGNITION
A. The SAR Review Board may recognize those SAR resources that have;
1. requested recognition by the SAR Review Board,
2. annually complete an information questionnaire provided by the SAR Resource Officer for the SAR Review Board's review, and
3. meets the minimum requirements for a Recognized SAR Resource as established by the SAR Board and the Chief of State Police.
B. After being recognized, a letter of Recognition will be provided to the SAR Resource signed by the SAR Review Board Chairperson and the Chief of the New Mexico State Police. Information on the Resource's capabilities and how to activate the resource will be included in the next printing of the state SAR Resource Directory.
IX. SEARCH AND RESCUE VOLUNTEERS
A. All SAR persons and SAR volunteers as specified in this Plan, are participating on a strictly voluntary basis and that the state of New Mexico, the New Mexico Department of Public Safety, the New Mexico State Police and the SAR Review Board and /or their employees, agents and insurers are not responsible for injuries to said participants except to the extent for which insurance is provided. It is further recognized, that those persons are subject to certain limited coverage pursuant to the New Mexico Tort Claims Act, NMSA 1978 § 41-4-1, et seq.
B. It is hereby recognized that those persons, including all SAR persons and SAR volunteers, participating at the direction of the Incident Commander in a properly initiated SAR incident are considered a temporary “public employee”, as defined in the Tort Claims Act, NMSA 1978, § 41-4-1, et seq., without compensation. This temporary status ceases upon suspension or termination of the SAR Incident. The “scope of duties” as defined in the Tort Claims Act are those duties set forth in the SAR ACT, Plan, or Standard Operating Procedures and Directives issued by the Chief of the New Mexico State Police.
Original signed by the Director of Technical Emergency Support Division, DPS on 1/24/96 and the Chief, New Mexico State Police on 1/19/96.
Search and Rescue Notification Flow Chart
(New Mexico SAR Plan)
THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO
THE EXECUTIVE AGENT FOR INLAND SAR
IN SUPPORT OF
THE NATIONAL SEARCH AND RESCUE PLAN
I. PURPOSE: To insure the effective use of all available facilities for search and rescue (SAR) activities, to incorporate state SAR agencies into the basic SAR network; and to provide an avenue for further agreements between the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) and the State of New Mexico.
2. SCOPE: This agreement is the basis for mutual coordination and cooperation for direction of SAR operations by the State of New Mexico and the AFRCC.
3. ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
a. The National Search and Rescue Plan designates the United States Air Force as the federal agency responsible for coordination of search and rescue within the continental United States (inland SAR area). The U.S. Coast Guard maintains facilities and may perform SAR operations, over, and under high seas and waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
b. The Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force has designated the Commander, Air Rescue Service, as the Executive Agent to implement the National SAR Plan in the United States. The Air Rescue Service has established the AFRCC to act as the SAR coordinator for the inland area. Therefore, the AFRCC, located at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, is the agency responsible for coordinating federal SAR activities in the inland area.
c. The Civil Air Patrol (CAP) is a corporation created by federal statute and is established by law as the auxiliary of the United States Air Force. The prosecution of search and rescue missions for the Air Force is one of the tasks performed by the CAP.
d. The New Mexico State Police is the state agency responsible for missing aircraft searches within the State of New Mexico. The New Mexico State Police is the responsible agency for missing persons searches within the State of New Mexico.
e. This agreement provides for federal assistance to local or state agencies conducting SAR missions. Also, state agencies, when possible, will provide assistance to the AFRCC. Provisions of assistance provided by both parties will be subject to availability of facilities at the time of the request.
4. AGREEMENTS: This agreement addresses two types of SAR incidents: civil incidents and non-civil incidents.
a. Civil SAR Incidents:
(1) A civil SAR incident is defined as a search and rescue mission to aid distressed civilian persons when such events occur within the boundaries of the State of New Mexico, except as noted in paragraph 4b.
(2) All civil incidents will normally be under the operational control of the New Mexico State Police; however, this will not preclude the state from requesting that the AFRCC assume operational control.
(3) The AFRCC will be notified if federal assistance, to include CAP, is desired by the state. The New Mexico State Police will inform the AFRCC of the status and termination of searches.
b. Non-Civil SAR Incidents:
(1) Non-Civil SAR incidents are defined as those incidents involving scheduled air carriers, aircraft operating under the provisions of the International Civil Aviation Organization agreements, aircraft on interstate flights, missions of national concern, and missions involving military personnel as the objective.
(2) All non-civil SAR incidents will be under the operational control of the AFRCC. The New Mexico State Police may be requested to assist the AFRCC on non-civil SAR incidents on that portion of the search conducted within the state borders.
(3) The AFRCC will notify the New Mexico State Police prior to initiating any active search within New Mexico. A determination will be made at that time as to the assistance the state may provide and which agency has operational control. The AFRCC will keep the State of New Mexico informed on the status and/or termination of a search.
a. Implementation of this agreement will be by memorandum of understanding between the state agencies having designated responsibilities under this agreement and the AFRCC Commander. Such memoranda of understanding will provide for specific mission procedures, channels of communication, points of contact, etc. The memoranda of understanding may be revised as frequently as necessary without requiring a revision of this agreement, so long as responsibilities as outlined herein do not change.
b. This agreement does not encompass SAR for such activities as emergencies affecting the public welfare as a result of civil disturbances; public disasters; or equivalent emergencies which endanger life and property or disrupt the usual process of government. However, the SAR organization and its facilities may be used to the maximum extent feasible for direct SAR in connection with the above activities.
c. Direct or indirect expenses incurred by facilities pursuant to this agreement will be borne by the organization or agency that provides the resource, Federally appropriated funds may not be used to reimburse expenses incurred by individuals except to members of the CAP an authorized by applicable USAF regulations.
d. No provision of this agreement is to be construed as an obstruction to prompt and effective action by federal, state or local SAR officials to relieve distress wherever and whenever found.
e. Press releases will be made by the organization or its designated representative exercising operational control over the mission.
f. This agreement shall become effective upon the date of final signatures and will remain in effect unless modified by mutual written agreement or terminated by either party with 60-days advanced written notice.
Original signed by John D. Woodruff, Colonel, USAF, Executive Agent, Inland SAR on 8/15/91 and Bruce King, Governor, State of New Mexico on 6/24/91.