SERGEANT Michael Wear, 45, from Fremantle water police will spend two months studying the world’s best search and rescue teams after scoring a Churchill Fellowship.
He heads off in April to spend time with the US coast guard and Singapore’s port authority, as both use similar computer programs to Australia, providing rapid predictions of where objects and missing people may drift.
“All the countries have different approaches and we all sort of lean on the United States model a lot,” he says.
A cop for 25 years, he says being on the water was his dream as a kid.
”Spots are pretty hard to get here, so when I applied earlier on in my career I never got in. I applied again after 17 years,” he says.
The information he brings back on technological and procedural advances will have national significance as St Wear teaches at Canberra’s search and rescue school once a year. He also plans to visit evacuation centers in San Diego and Hawaii and hopes to join a “live” operation: “Hopefully they have searches on and I can see how it’s done.”
by JASMINA SADDEDINE