If you are a person that wants to participate in search and rescue, then you should consider enlisting in the United States Coast Guard. It is part of Homeland Security, previously it was part of the Department of Transportation. The Coast Guard participates and takes the point in most search and rescue operations in the United States, especially anything dealing with water, ocean or marine maritime activity. As an agency the Coast Guard carries at its primary mission Search and Rescue operations, in addition to a number of other missions including drug interdiction, smuggling prevention, and port security.
There are a number of different careers involved in search and rescue operations in the Coast Guard. The specialities involved include:
Aviation Crewmembers- These Servicemembers are involved in helicopter operations, and serve as rescue swimmers. They work as search and rescue crewmembers for helicopters that rescue mariners, civilians who become stranded when their boat malfunctions, as well as people who are lost at sea or shipwrecked on reefs or other maritime hazards. They serve on helicopters and fixed wing aircraft, and participate to locate, search and retrieve individuals that need assistance in or near the ocean and bodies of water.
Port Security And Boat Crew- These are crew members that serve on small boat crew and help to inspect shipping at all of our nations ports. They also participate in search and rescue operations involving small Coast Guard vessels, working to search on waterways and bodies of water to assist the public. There are a wide variety of small boat operations that are performed by boat crewmembers that assist in finding and rescuing members of the public that need help.
Boatswains Mate- The rating of Boatswains mate is the command non-commissioned rating of the Coast Guard, and they serve as the person in charge on small boat crews. The position is referred to as coxswain, and they are the captains of small boat 3 man crews that work to locate and rescue persons needing assistance. Coast Guard personnel participate in search and rescue and three other national defense type tasks. They work at Peacetime Coast security, Maritime intercept operations, and Environmental defense, as well as their priority Search and Rescue. All enlisted Servicemembers begin with their boot camp experience at Cape May New Jersey, and after their 9-week basic training they will attend Class A school to learn how to become a trained search and rescue Servicemember.