AUSTIN (KXAN) -On Monday Caldwell County commissioners honored the Texas Search and Rescue (TEXSAR), a volunteer organization, for their efforts during the Halloween floods.
TEXSAR assisted Caldwell County and other agencies in the rescues and recovery searches using their volunteers and K-9 teams.
The volunteer organization also announced Monday that they are expanding.
Beginning March 1, Cen-Tex Search and Rescue will become part of TEXSAR. This will equip TEXSAR with a K9 strike team that specializes in searching for people and human remains.
Ten search dogs and more than a dozen search and rescue technicians from Cen-Tex will join TEXSAR. Since 2004, Cen-Tex has helped in more than 70 searches using their canines. The dogs and handlers hold numerous certifications.
“The addition of these members and resources provides valuable tools to better serve our Texas law enforcement agencies,” said TEXSAR CEO Greg Pyles. “These highly trained K9 teams and ground search members allow us to further support the TEXSAR mission of Texans helping Texans.”
TEXSAR specializes in emergency response, focusing on search and rescue, emergency relief and disaster response under the emergency management system and the national incident management system.
The group’s capabilities include search and rescue, as well as flood and swift water rescue. TEXSAR deploys at the request of federal agencies, the governor, state agencies, local law enforcement and relief agencies. Volunteers have helped during hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Ike, as well as missing person searches, Central Texas fires and shelter operations.