Jerome Boss


Jerome Boss

Jerome has been a member and a leader in the King County Search and Rescue organization (Washington State) for the last 15 years. Coming from a tech background, he has been very active in several technology initiatives related to SAR, most recently since 2016, setting up the UAS (drone) capabilities for the organization and many partners and groups like SAR teams, police, fire, marine, mountain, both in the US and other countries. King County in Washington State is somewhat unique in that it contains both a seaside, large lakes, national parks, and a tall mountain range, in the same territory. There are also about 4 million people living in the Seattle Metropolitan area. Working with the County Sheriff, our SAR organization has had to constantly invent methodologies and technologies to stay ahead of the various mission types we are faced with daily - mountain rescues, subject searches in forest, urban dementia walkaways, natural disasters and weather events, water searches, and general support for law enforcement, fire, medical aid and aviation. As part of this work, Jerome participated in the creation of new protocols for advanced UAS SAR search, including the introduction of real-time and post-flight analysis, new methodologies for drone water searches, new abilities to drop supplies and medical equipment, support methodologies for mountain and water rescue teams, working methods with dog teams and snow teams, and more. He is also a member in the IEDO (international emergency drone organization.

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With the advent of UAS technology in the civilian field in the last decade, drones have become very prevalent within SAR activities at various levels.

While today drones are almost part of the basic package for every SAR unit responding to any event and are used in a variety of mission types, using them in a way that helps the SAR efforts and provides operational and tactical advantages has sometimes been a challenge, which raises some questions:

- Should UAS be used in every scenario and mission?
- Is there a methodology for using UAS in hasty teams when a mission spins up?
- What are the different packages we need to create and adapt for various mission types?
- How do we prepare assignments for UAS as part of mission management?
- How do we not overwhelm the mission with too much data?
- What can we do to produce only actionable data that generates new assignments?