Sonoma County Search and Rescue

Sonoma County Search and Rescue

Emergency Phone#


helicopter, team member looking, team members training, and white pickup

Sonoma County Search & Rescue is a volunteer non-profit organization. It is registered as such in the State of California and with the Federal Government under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS code.


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Sonoma County Search & Rescue

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For general questions about our team email:

Sonoma County Sheriff's Office website:

Join Us

What You Need To Know

We are wrapping up our last recruiting round and hope to add our new crew in May 2024.    If you are interested in joining this team we will likely start the next round in the fall- Oct./Nov. 2024.  Those who have submitted an application will be put in the queue and updated as to details.  We have been receiving and holding applications- please stay patient and rest assured you are on a list.  We do not have specific background requirements for joining the team other than living or working in Sonoma County, being 18 years of age or older, and a commitment to train with this team in all the necessary skills. It is expected that applicants can pass the physical fitness test hike with a 20 lb pack, be in reasonably good physical condition, and can commit to the team for a minimum period of two years with the required attendance.  In general you would be well suited to the team if you are comfortable functioning in the outdoor environment under all weather conditions, day or night, on and off trail.  

Being a Search and Rescue team member involves a significant commitment of time and energy that should not be taken lightly.  We are on call 24/7.  Please review the literature below.

Job Description

Ongoing training is a necessity to develop and maintain adequate skills in order to function safely and effectively as a searcher.  All team members are trained to the same professional skill level.  Those with additional expertise may be well suited to help lead our team after meeting their incoming requirements.  While your individual training is paramount, the ability to work as a team and with others is equally important.  We typically hold team trainings, in the field, the second Saturday of the month.  Shorter classroom type trainings may be given at our General Monthly meetings, which are held on the first Wednesday evening of each month. Regular participation in these trainings is mandatory for all members. New recruits go through an 16+ hour Basic Training to introduce them to the various skills that are integral to our mission.  All team members must obtain Emergency First Responder training or Wilderness First Aid within their first 2 years on the SAR team.

Due to the training time involved in becoming an effective searcher we ask for a commitment of two years from new volunteers . If you are accepted as an applicant at the conclusion of the oral interview you will need to undergo a thorough background inquiry by the Sheriff’s Office and a medical review before being accepted as a team member.  The time from the Orientation meeting to the completion of the background check can take anywhere from 6 months to 1 year.  Please keep this in mind if your time is very limited.

Please find attached a copy of the Sheriff’s Office Drug Use Guidelines. Please review it. If necessary, you may delay applying until you are in compliance with these guidelines. Paste into your browser: