Sunday, March 25, 2012

Civil Air Patrol trains at Fresno Yosemite International Airport

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Dozens of volunteers with the Civil Air Patrol spent today on a special training mission making sure they're ready to go on a moment's notice. Volunteers gathered at Fresno Yosemite International Airport to brush up on their search and rescue skills.

The Civil Air Patrol is an all volunteer auxiliary branch of the U.S. Air Force. They are often called upon to conduct searches -- tracking emergency beacons on downed planes.

"We also do visual searches, a lot of the time, a beacon is unavailable, so our pilots and crews, even our ground crews, are trained in doing visual searches to be able to locate a missing aircraft, if it had to make an emergency landing or if it just crashed, if it's just missing," said Lt. Col. Joe Brickland with the Civil Air Patrol.

The Civil Air Patrol used its own fleet of aircraft to conduct it's training on Saturday. It's the same planes it uses during searches. Locally, that fleet includes a Turbo 182 -- a state of the art piece of equipment built especially for these kinds of searches

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