JOIN TACOMA MOUNTAIN RESCUE

TMR is a volunteer search and rescue organization. Our missions can occur anywhere in Washington and range from non-technical urban searches to very technical and dangerous searches on glaciers or vertical rock in inclement weather.

Minimum Skills Required for Field Support Members

TMR expects applicants to possess the training and experience necessary to accompany our team safely on glaciers and technical rock. The training provided by TMR focuses on group rescue techniques and will not provide these entry-level technical skills. In addition, applicants must have completed, at the very least, a basic CPR and first aid course.

The types of entry-level technical skills applicants are expected to be proficient in include, but are not limited to, the following: rope handling, knots, navigation, belaying/rappelling, basic crevasse/rock rescue, self-arresting with an ice-axe, and glacier travel. Applicants typically acquire these entry-level technical skills through a formal mountaineering course. Highly experienced mountaineers may substitute equivalent technical experience for a formal course, but this must be readily apparent on your application.

Special Exceptions

Acceptance by the Board without entry-level technical skills is uncommon. If you are in the process of completing a formal mountaineering course or feel that you are nearly qualified for entry, please email membership@tacomamountainrescue.org to explain your circumstances.

Administrative Positions

In addition, if you are interested in joining TMR in a more administrative role (such as grant-writing, fundraising, finance, etc.), please email membership@tacomamountainrescue.org with your interest.

TMR Application Process

The major steps of the application process for field support members include the following (in order):

  1. Fill out and return the “New Member Application” to membership@tacomamountainrescue.org.
  2. Complete a phone interview with the Membership Chair.
  3. Successfully pass a written and hands-on mountaineering skills test.
  4. Obtain a valid Washington State Department of Emergency Management (DEM) number.
  5. Receive TMR Board approval to join TMR.
  6. Pay Membership dues ($20 per year for your membership of MRA and WMRA as of March 2017)

Once the Membership Chair reviews an applicant’s application, the Membership Chair will schedule a phone interview with the applicant. The phone interview is intended to provide feedback to the applicant.

If the membership chair decides the applicant is potentially qualified, the Membership Chair will schedule the applicant to complete a mountaineering skills test (the applicant will receive additional information via email before the skills test). . By the day of the skills test, the applicant shall submit copies of the required certifications, listed below, to the Membership Chair.

If the applicant successfully completes the mountaineering skills test, the Membership Chair will provide the applicant with a DEM application (this is a separate, Pierce County application). Per Washington Administrative Code 118-04-080 and TMR Board decision, a valid DEM number is required for all TMR members to possess in order to participate in missions or field-trainings. All applicants must successfully pass a DEM background check and comply with State rules and regulations.

After an applicant completes all of the above steps and is issued a DEM number by Pierce County, the Membership Chair will present the application to the TMR Board for approval. If approved by the TMR Board, the applicant is required to pay membership dues and expected to participate in TMR events and trainings.

Required Certifications for the Application Process

The following certifications are required for the application process:

  1. Valid CPR/First Aid Card (or other medical certification).
  2. Completion of the following Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) National Incident Management System (NIMS) Incident Command System (ICS) Courses:

Please note, the FEMA NIMS ICS courses are free in cost and are available online to complete. It may take a few to several hours to complete, so it is highly recommended to begin/complete these courses early in the application process. If you have completed these courses before, you may be able to obtain copies of your completed certifications or student transcript by contacting the Emergency Management Institute at the FEMA website.

If you have any questions regarding the application process, please email: membership@tacomamountainrescue.org.