4/16/2012–Glen Burnie, Md–The exercise started Friday, April 13 with notification of a missing aircraft. The aircraft departed Carroll County Regional Airport in Westminster, Maryland on Friday, April 13 at 12:00 noon on a training flight. A mission base was established at Carroll County Regional Airport to conduct the search. The Wing used the Mobile Incident Command Post and two of the Wing’s Transportable Incident Command Posts to conduct the mission.
The flight was planned to four local airports: FDK (Frederick, Maryland), W42 (Fallston, Maryland) 58M (Elkton, Maryland) and ESN (Easton, Maryland). The scenario had the aircraft last seen departing FDK at 12:55 p.m. on Friday April 13. The initial search area covered Frederick, Carroll, Baltimore, Harford, Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties.
As the search for the missing aircraft got underway, the Coast Guard requested assistance in a search for a missing boater. The exercise scenario had a captain of a boat reporting a missing passenger. The boat departed North East, Maryland at 9:00 p.m. At the time the passenger was reported missing, the boat was rounding Turkey Point due west of Elk Neck State Park.
Maryland aircrews and ground teams spotted both the overdue aircraft and the missing boater. By 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 14 both survivors had been transported to a local hospital. The exercise ended the way Maryland Wing hopes all actual missions end – with the survivors being reunited with their families.
The search and rescue exercise is part of Maryland Wing’s ongoing preparedness for actual emergencies. Six aircraft, five ground teams, and a total of 56 personnel took part in the exercise. Participants were given the opportunity to practice the skills necessary to conduct an actual search and rescue mission.
Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, is a nonprofit organization with more than 61,000 members nationwide, operating a fleet of 550 aircraft. CAP, in its Air Force auxiliary role, performs 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and was credited by the AFRCC with saving 54 lives in fiscal year 2011. Its volunteers also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. The members play a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to nearly 27,000 young people currently participating in the CAP cadet program. CAP received the World Peace Prize in 2011 and has been performing missions for America for 70 years. CAP also participates in Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans. Visit www.gocivilairpatrol.com or www.capvolunteernow.com for more information.
More than 1,500 members of CAP serve in Maryland. Last fiscal year wing members flew 42 search and rescue missions and were credited with 31 finds. For more information contact The Maryland Wing at www.mdcap.org.