Skagit Bay Search & Rescue (SBSAR) is a volunteer organization whose primary mission is providing search and rescue services on the sometimes dangerous waters of Skagit Bay, Deception Pass, the Swinomish Channel and the north fork of the Skagit River. SBSAR operates under the authority of the “Marine Patrol Unit” of the Skagit County Sheriffs Office.
Thousands of people venture out on our waters each year in large yachts and small boats. Boaters, fishermen, hunters and kayakers often underestimate the power and speed of the tidal currents and waves in Deception Pass and Skagit Bay, river currents in the Skagit River and the numbing and deadly effects of cold water.
SBSAR operates under the authority of the Skagit County Sheriffs Office/Marine Patrol Unit. SBSAR works with the Sheriff Office’s Marine Patrol Unit, US Coast Guard, Whidbey Island Navy Base Search and Rescue, Skagit Dive-Rescue, K-9 Search and Rescue and ESAR.
The SBSAR team members are trained in boat operations, navigation, search and rescue procedures and medical support and transportation. Our team has two dedicated, response ready boats stationed in the South Basin/ La Conner Marina and in the Shelter Bay Marina. We add team members’ personal boats to operate as a coordinated rescue fleet for large-scale emergencies.
We also act as support, escort and rescue boats for scheduled events like local kayak races and waterfront activities such as the La Conner Smelt Derby. We respond to mishaps and emergencies during those events.
How do we support ourselves?
SBSAR is entirely supported by donations and money from fundraisers. We are a non-profit 501c (3) organization. Contributions are used for rescue boat fuel, maintenance and purchase of rescue equipment. Contributions are always welcomed.
Interested in joining Skagit Bay Search & Rescue?
SBSAR is looking for new volunteers. You should be a team player and dedicated to the work. You should be 16 years old or older and live in the La Conner/Shelter Bay area. You should be in good health. Annual membership fees are $1.00. We meet once a month for classroom training and a business meeting and meet once a month for on-the-water search and rescue training.