OUR VIEW JULY 17: Stealing from Grand Forks Search and Rescue plain low

The theft of close to $7,000 from a Grand Forks Search and Rescue truck is just plain wrong.

As witnessed by the police report that Grand Forks RCMP supplies the Grand Forks Gazette with regularly, thefts happen in Grand Forks.

It might be someone breaking and entering a residence, it might be a break-and-enter (B&E) into a locked or unlocked car or it may even be a B&E into a tool shed.

Regardless of when and where or how small and insignificant the item, B&Es and theft are wrong.

Which makes the theft from a storage unit of close to $7,000 in items from Grand Forks Search and Rescue more egregious.

Six Icom UHF radios, six Kenwood radios, six Delorme GPS tracking units and the batteries for each of the radios were taken sometime between February and July 9 – while the functions of the radios and units may not be familiar to the layperson, you can be assured it is for search and rescue members.

The items are not mundane and are necessary for Grand Forks Search and Rescue to perform its function, which is even more valuable given the increased number of people that will be tubing and swimming due to the great weather the area has been receiving lately.

Communication is of the utmost importance in search and rescue operations, as the ability to pass information on quickly can increase efficiency and that is especially important when dealing with a life or death situation.

As well, the aim of a search and rescue group, as stated on the B.C. Search and Rescue Association website, is to provide “volunteer search and rescue services” and the theft will hinder the group’s efforts.

There have been reports of people stealing iPads from wheelchair-bound patients and while this isn’t on the same level, it is an act that is disappointing and one that many will frown upon.

Incidents where the group is needed can pop up at any time and if it occurs in the near future, it will be minus some key pieces of equipment, which isn’t a good situation.

Stealing is plain wrong, especially when it’s from Grand Forks Search and Rescue.

– Grand Forks Gazette

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