Volcano Rescue Team
The Volcano Rescue Team (VRT) was formed in 1986 under the auspices of North Country EMS. This organization serves as a resource to handle mountain-related incidents with the opening of Mt. St. Helens to climbing.
The function of the VRT has broadened somewhat since its inception. It now provides hasty search teams and other rescue activities around the mountain and the NCEMS service district. This is in addition to its role as a technical mountain rescue organization. The VRT is an accredited member and follows the training guidelines of the Mountain Rescue Association (MRA).
VRT personnel are highly trained in all aspects of rescue and emergency medical services. The training received by the VRT members meets all the requirements of the Washington Administrative Code (WAC) for search teams. In fact, VRT training inlcudes all aspects of mountain rescue, cave rescue, avalanche search and rescue, high angle rescue, and crevasse rescue.
Persons desiring to volunteer for the Volcano Rescue Team must be fit enough to pass the VRT physical ability test. While no prior mountaineering experience is necessary, it is helpful; preference is given to those applicants with outdoor experience and training. Attendance at the monthly meetings (the first Monday of every month) is required. In addition, monthly field and classroom training is provided for all members.