State Search & Rescue Coordinator has a message for Winter Travelers: Know Before You Go

Winter weather is here, and Oregon Office of Emergency Management State Search Rescue Coordinator Scott Lucas says Oregon is seeing uptick in lost or stranded travelers on foot and in vehicles.  He is reminding Oregonians and visitors of ways to stay safe.

Lucas says the search and rescue community in Oregon stands ready to respond when needed, but that being safe and prepared should always be the priority. That means being having food, water, maps and other items needed for comfort and safety in the event you get lost or stranded. Also, knowing your route and weather conditions before you go is important, said Lucas.

“Technology should not replace sound planning when using GPS in your car, or for an adventure on foot like going out into the woods with your family this holiday season to look for a tree. Careless planning can result in discomfort, injury – or worse yet – loss  of life,” Lucas reminds us. “It is a good idea to have an emergency kit in your car, and extra supplies when you travel on foot.”

Lucas recommends not relying on GPS alone and using resources for Oregon travel like or calling 511 for road conditions.

The Oregon Office of Emergency Management Search and Rescue program supports a broad spectrum of search and rescue operations in Oregon. That mission includes coordinating activities of state and federal agencies involved in search and rescue, liaising with the Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association and other organizations, and providing on-scene search and rescue coordination when requested.