British Columbia

Kamloops Search and Rescue on hunt for new home base

The volunteer organization, which has moved headquarters numerous times over the years, says its current location is too small. It’s also crawling with spiders and mice and has a leaking roof.

The volunteer group says it needs something big enough for team and equipment

The volunteer-led group struggles to store all its rescue equipment and hold meetings for large groups of people in the current location. (Kamloops Search and Rescue)

Kamloops Search and Rescue is on a search of its own: for a new home.

The volunteer organization, which has moved headquarters numerous times over the years, says its current location is too small. It's also crawling with spiders and mice and has a leaking roof.

"Our team has grown significantly over the last few years," said search manager Alan Hobler.

"We've grown to the point where we definitely need something larger and we want something more permanent."

The search and rescue team has 36 members right now, but that sometimes stretches to 50 people.

Without an adequate location, they've had to keep some of their rescue equipment like ATVs and snowmobiles stored in alternative places outside.

They also don't have any office space and struggle to bring large groups together for briefings or training.

"The city has been good at finding us temporary locations … [but] we don't currently have a permanent home," he told Shelley Joyce, the host of CBC's Daybreak Kamloops.

Search manager Alan Hobler says a new, permanent location could cost a million dollars to build from scratch but he's confident the money can be raised. (Kamloops Search and Rescue )

Ideal location with easy access

Ideally, the new location would be in central Kamloops with easy access to the highway, Hobler said.

"At one point, we were up by the airport and it was a little far away for us because our members have to drive out to the hall when we're responding to a call out and then drive from there," he said.

"That was significantly adding to our response time."

Hobler is confident the non-profit organization can raise enough funds to build a new headquarters — they just need to find a permanent location to put it.

"We're looking at probably about 65,000 square feet — so if somebody has something out there that's possibly available for us, please let us know," he said.

The volunteer organization, which has moved headquarters numerous times over the years, says its current location is too small. It's also crawling with spiders and mice and has a leaking roof. 3:19

With files from Daybreak Kamloops