Project Details


As an island state, the UK frequently faces the challenge of someone going missing or being in distress on our coast, lakes and rivers. When such an event occurs, there are many agencies that may be required to respond. Not only this, they may be required to, at a moment’s notice, all work together in a manner which is at odds to their day-to-day operation. The UK Search and Rescue framework (UKSAR, 2017) acts as a regulatory framework to manage and coordinate response to such incidents across multiple agencies. When counting units within organisations covered, UKSAR potentially applies to hundreds of teams and thousands of individual responders.

By focusing on the singular issue of how the UK responds to incidents in water, this project aims to begin unravelling the complexities of the UKSAR framework. Firstly, while the framework presents a proposed response and command structure, at present there is no clear map of which organisations have a defined responsibility for responding to water incidents, and what their capabilities are. Secondly, it is unclear whether and how the policies, cultures and practices of the many UKSAR organisations align; even the definition of “in water” is not agreed upon. Thirdly, the framework follows a top-down model. So far, there has been little to no examination of how adequately the UKSAR framework meets the needs of responders at implementation level. The project seeks to address these issues.
Effective start/end date1/01/1931/07/20


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