Below is an intention form that you can fill out. We will issue the form to the very guys that will be first on the scene if you get in trouble. This information is shared on a case by case basis relative to the where you are headed. Namely PSAR (Police Search and Rescue), The Local Police and the relevant Ski Patrol where you are headed. We will send you a copy of the form you submit. You need to share this with the 'Contact Person' ( added on the form below) either in printed form or as a forwarded email. The goal here is to twofold. To let you fill out an intentions form literally 'on the fly' as you drive up, often at night when the Police Office is closed. And also equip your potential emergency responders with the detailed information regarding you party, your equipment and your location.
Remember, Police Victoria won't initiate a search unless notified by the Contact Person.
This intention form is only intended for use by small independent groups. Or small guided groups. School groups, club trips and training parties should contact Police Victoria and check in, in person. Parties accessing the park via specifically Telephone Box Junction need to use the Mt Stirling Ski Patrol Intentions system.
Form provided by Victoria Police Search & Rescue Squad for Community Safety Purposes.
Information is supplied as a guide only.
The following information is only an overview of outdoor issues and should be a starting point for any person wishing to enjoy a safe wilderness experience. Before entering a wilderness environment; Plan your trip – Research your trip – using a current map and advice from experience park users and local authorities. Understand the environment you are entering and risks associated with it, plan for the unexpected.
Emergency response / rescue can take time always have an emergency plan factored into your trip.
Know your limitations - Physical, medical, experience, skills for area. Travel within you ability and knowledge of area. Have a trip intention plan – leave a copy in your vehicle and with a reliable person. Fill out trip intentions books if available. Notify that person if you change your plans. Trip intention form attached. Water – Always carry sufficient water for trip – day and overnight trips. Carry more water than you’ll need, plan for emergencies. Stay hydrated and do not rely on creeks unless you have reliable information. Food – As with water carry sufficient for trip and pack extra in case of emergencies. Clothing – Dress for conditions, bring extra and have wet weather clothing available. Always have enough to cover you for the worst-case scenario. Weather conditions in wilderness environments are sometimes unpredictable. Equipment – Always have a map and compass. GPS and mobile phones help but they do not replace experience. Bush walking clubs are a good way to advance your experience and knowledge. Weather – Always check a current weather report but do not rely on it, plan for worst-case scenario by carrying extra food, water, clothing and equipment.
Suggested Equipment list
1. Suitable backpack
2. Map (current) and compass. GPS (extra batteries) learn how to use before leaving on trip
3. Headlamp, spare batteries and bulb
5. Correct clothing – Seek advice outdoor stores, bush walking clubs. 6. Extra clothing
7. Extra food and water
8. Have correct footwear – wear in before long bush walks
9. Water proof matches and container
10. Candle / fire starter
11. Pocket knife
12. First aid kit – individual and group.
13. Tent or bivvy bag
14. Large rubbish bag for emergency shelter and keeping equipment dry in you pack
15. Note book and pencil
16. Sunglasses / sun hat / sunscreen
17. Mobile phone – Be aware it will not always have coverage.
18. Emergency Position Indicating Beacon EPIRB 406
19. Senses of adventure but know your limitations.
Common factors which contribute to parties becoming overwhelmed (There is usually a combination of the below factors which result in problems occurring)
1. Lack of planning, poor visibility or challenging snow conditions beyond the parties ability.
2. Terrain, hazards such as cliffs, river crossings which may delay or cause injury
3. Weather, poor weather in area of search, hypothermia or hyperthermia
4. Equipment, poor Equipment – failure of or inappropriate for area
5. Ability, Over confidant - skill ability not proven for particular terrain 6. Decision-making, lack of leadership within party – leading to poor decisions. Once lost walking in one direction believing they will come across civilization eventually
7. Fatigue, leading to poor decisions or injury
8. Physical ability, poor physical condition
9. Lack of food or water, contributing to fatigue and poor decision making
10. Medical, preexisting or accident during trip 11. Technology, over reliance in technology EG GPS flat batteries / mobile phones – no coverage
12. Underestimating route, causing delay and/or unable to identify terrain hazards
13. No map / compass, contributing to disorientation of person/s
WHAT TO DO IF LOST
• Stop and think. Stay calm
• Recheck navigation and map
• Re track steps a short distance may assist. Locate your last known point if possible
• Gaining some height may assist in orientation given visibility - If above does not help STAY WHERE YOU ARE.
• Find shelter stay warm and dry.
• Attempt to make your position visible to searchers land and air. E.g. fire or bright clothing in open area that can be seen by air searches.
• If you are in a group stay together, never separate.
• Be aware it can take a considerable time for rescuers to reach you so your priority is to remain warm and dry, ration your food and water if necessary.