2023 November SAREX in Pierre
CAP members from around the state participated in a training exercise in Pierre. The mission included air visual and electronic (ELT) search, aircraft-to-ground team communication, and unmanned photography drone 3D building mapping. “Our work in this exercise included some components we haven’t trained on recently,” said Capt. Kevin Pegelow, “but we demonstrated adaptability and, in most cases, fully achieved our exercise objectives.”
South Dakota Wing members continued expanded use of the SARTOPO search mapping software to document search coordinates, ground team locations, and search clues.
Another highlight of the mission was use of an unmanned aerial system (UAS or photography drone) to perform a 365-degree mapping of the state capitol building. The activity, requiring advanced coordination with capitol security, replicated the kinds of building mapping that CAP might perform for damage assessment after a storm or other natural disaster.
The next step after the exercise is to compile an After Action Report and analyze what successes should be capitalized on and what elements could benefit from adjustments or improvements, according the CAP’s commander for South Dakota, Col. Michael Marek.
Most of the phits we have from this exercise are from the small Unpiloted Aerial System (photography drone) sortie at the state capitol: