Spokane Sheriff's Air Support Unit training to find missing persons - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane Sheriff's Air Support Unit training to find missing persons

Posted: Updated:
Spokane Co. Sheriff's Office Air One helps track missing persons & suspects Spokane Co. Sheriff's Office Air One helps track missing persons & suspects

SPOKANE, Wash. - If you hear the whir of the Spokane County Sheriff's Office Air One helicopter overhead Wednesday afternoon don't worry, its likely part of a training effort between deputies on the ground and the Air Support Unit. Members of the Air Support Unit are training using the Rapid Recovery System that helps the Sheriff's Office locate missing Alzheimer's, dementia, autism and other medically-challenged victims who are prone to becoming lost in Eastern Washington. 

The system uses radio frequencies emitted by bracelets worn by the at-risk patients to track them if they go missing. On the ground the system has a range of about one mile but by using a radio frequency detector onboard Air One the Sheriff's Office increases the effective range to five miles.

The Sheriff's Office encourages people who may be at risk to look into the radio frequency emitting bracelets as a safety precaution. Sgt. Dave Reagan with the Sheriff's Office says that recent changes in Medicare & Medicaid rules may now allow patients to receive financial assistance in obtaining the bracelets.

To learn more about the bracelets contact Spokane County Sheriff's Deputy Wade Nelson at wanelson@spokanesheriff.org or at 509-477-7610. 

The Spokane County Sheriff's Air Unit was on a list of possible budget cuts earlier this year but the Spokane County Board of Commissioners voted to continue funding the helicopter unit. Besides assisting in search and rescue the Air Support Unit is used by local law enforcement to assist in tracking suspects during vehicle and foot pursuits using a FLIR imaging system. FLIR stands for Forward Looking Infrared. The FLIR system is a key component in tracking suspects and locating missing persons.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Rollover crash sends three to hospitals

    Rollover crash sends three to hospitals

    Sunday, August 31 2014 2:04 PM EDT2014-08-31 18:04:16 GMT
    NEWPORT, Wash. - A rollover crash near Newport sent three people to hospitals Saturday night.The Washington State Patrol said the crash happened at 8:49 p.m. 10 miles west of Newport on State Route 211, near Sacheen Lake. The driver in the crash, 19-year-old Quinton C. Williams, is facing charges for driving under the influence.>>
    NEWPORT, Wash. - A rollover crash near Newport sent three people to hospitals Saturday night.The Washington State Patrol said the crash happened at 8:49 p.m. 10 miles west of Newport on State Route 211, near Sacheen Lake. The driver in the crash, 19-year-old Quinton C. Williams, is facing charges for driving under the influence.>>
  • PHOTOS: Hobo Spider season has arrived

    PHOTOS: Hobo Spider season has arrived

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:37 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:37:17 GMT
    KHQ.COM - Mid August is about the time that we start to see spiders come into our homes, particularly the hobo spider. August and September is mating season for the hobo and that means you may be seeing more funnel-like webs in and around your home. Males are on a mission to find a female which is why they are a lot more active at this time.>>
    KHQ.COM - Mid August is about the time that we start to see spiders come into our homes, particularly the hobo spider. August and September is mating season for the hobo and that means you may be seeing more funnel-like webs in and around your home. Males are on a mission to find a female which is why they are a lot more active at this time.
    >>
  • UPDATE: I-90 back open after crash halts traffic

    UPDATE: I-90 back open after crash halts traffic

    Sunday, August 31 2014 10:45 AM EDT2014-08-31 14:45:23 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - A crash on Interstate 90 in downtown Spokane delayed commuters for hours Saturday afternoon. The crash happened at about 5:15 p.m. near the Division street exit. A truck pulling a trailer flipped onto its side, scattering debris across the westbound lanes of the freeway. Two lanes of westbound traffic were blocked for more than 2 hours.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - A crash on Interstate 90 in downtown Spokane delayed commuters for hours Saturday afternoon. The crash happened at about 5:15 p.m. near the Division street exit. A truck pulling a trailer flipped onto its side, scattering debris across the westbound lanes of the freeway. Two lanes of westbound traffic were blocked for more than 2 hours.>>
  • Top Stories Publishing Category - Top StoriesMore>>

  • Gonzaga Ready to Prove Worthy of No. 1 Seed

    Gonzaga Ready to Prove Worthy of No. 1 Seed

    Thursday, March 21 2013 1:31 AM EDT2013-03-21 05:31:52 GMT
    Gonzaga rolls into the NCAA tournament with a 31-2 record and the first No. 1 seed in program history.Gonzaga rolls into the NCAA tournament with a 31-2 record and the first No. 1 seed in program history.
    Gonzaga embarks on its first NCAA tournament as a No. 1 seed on Thursday at 1:10 p.m. PT. The game will be broadcast on TBS with postgame press conferences streamed live on SWX TV and swxrightnow.com.>>
    Gonzaga embarks on its first NCAA tournament as a No. 1 seed on Thursday at 1:10 p.m. PT. The game will be broadcast on TBS with postgame press conferences streamed live on SWX TV and swxrightnow.com.>>
  • UPDATE: Police Use Pepper Spray To End Standoff In North Spokane

    UPDATE: Police Use Pepper Spray To End Standoff In North Spokane

    Monday, April 11 2011 5:05 PM EDT2011-04-11 22:05:03 GMT
    KHQ.COM - There's new information on the pepper spray incident over the weekend involving the Spokane Police Dept.>>
    UPDATE: During the investigation into this weekend's standoff in the 5500 block of north Greenwood Blvd., witnesses told police 41-year-old James Vandyke made comments about "shooting it out with police" and "suicide by cop.">>
  • Cal Coburn Brown: Dead By Lethal Injection at 12:56 a.m.

    Cal Coburn Brown: Dead By Lethal Injection at 12:56 a.m.

    Friday, September 10 2010 12:26 PM EDT2010-09-10 17:26:50 GMT
    WALLA WALLA, Wash.- Cal Coburn Brown was declared dead by prison officials at 12:56 a.m. Friday morning.>>
    WALLA WALLA, Wash.- Cal Coburn Brown was declared dead by prison officials at 12:56 a.m. Friday morning. He was put to death by lethal injection for the 1991 murder of 24-year-old Holly Washa.  >>INSIDE: Report from Tom Durian who was in the execution chamber at the time of Coburn's death>>