The United Kingdom International Search and Rescue Team (UK-ISAR) are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to respond to humanitarian accidents or disasters anywhere in the world, to provide a search and rescue facility.

Disasters and accidents can happen at any time and anywhere in the world, often without warning. There is a need for professional teams that can be deployed rapidly and undertake effective search and rescue operations. The UK ISAR Team is registered with the United Nations and The European Community Mechanism and provides such a service. The team has been operating for over 20 years and have successfully carried out search, rescue and relief missions around the world. The UK International Search and Rescue Team has components supplied by 13 UK fire and rescue services. Each service undertakes to provide a six-person team of search and rescue specialists. The team work a rota system ensuring that at least 36 search and rescue specialists are available at any one time for both national and international deployments. These fire and rescue service groups each work a four month cycle involving periods of Immediate Response and Secondary Response. Immediate Response indicates readiness to deploy to a point of departure in the UK arriving within six hours of receiving deployment notification, with secondary response being ready to deploy within 24 hours. The team is composed of the following elements:

  • Management
  • Logistics
  • Medical
  • Search
  • Rescue

Specific groups also provide command, logistical and medical support in order to ensure that the team is self-sufficient and meets all the requirements of the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG).

Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service’s ISAR Team consists of volunteers who are operational firefighters, Crew or Watch Managers within Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service.