mconnell wrote: The Chief wrote: mconnell wrote:
MoapaPk wrote:One mode of failure, experienced by a person on SP: the 911 call goes out, gets transferred to a SAR unit, and the unit decides not to respond.
Sounds like the basis for one hell of a law suit.
YA can't when a SAR UNIT is Voluntary based.
This exact same thing occurred to me.
The SPOT worked as advertised. Can't say the same for the unit it was dispatching.
You can absolutely sue volunteers, and people have won suing volunteers that put others at risk by failing to do what the volunteered to do.
You can sue anyone if you can draft a complaint and pay the filing fee. But you'd subject yourself to claims of abuse of process and malicious prosecution if you had no legal basis for your suit. Chief is correct. In general, SAR units have no legal duty
to respond and therefore have virtually unlimited discretion on how to respond and whether to respond at all. Fear of creating a legal duty to rescue is one of the reasons most SAR shot-callers are against enacting laws allowing charging for rescue costs, even for the guy wearing tennis shoes on Liberty Ridge.
I definitely believe SPOT and similar devices are valuable additions to safety margins, especially if you're solo, but your loved ones should know that the device can't guarantee you a rescue even if the device works as intended and you critically need rescue.