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UT Second time in two weeks, a missing scout ...

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MOAB, Utah - Found! Scout, who was mountain biking with his troop was reported missing Friday afternoon, was located Saturday in good condition by a Utah Department of Public Safety helicopter.

Friday: Searchers are looking for a missing 15-year-old Boy Scout last seen Friday afternoon, according to the Grand County Sheriff's Office. The sheriff's office was notified about 2:50 p.m. that the missing teen from a Vineyard Boy Scout troop had been seen 45 minutes earlier mountain biking near Gemini Bridges. He was not believed to have water with him.

Family members confirmed the teen is 15-year-old Kyler Woods.

The sheriff's office described the Boy Scout as about 6 feet tall and 120 pounds with blonde hair, braces and glasses. He was wearing a white T-shirt and blue denim shorts.

According to a social media post from the Grand County Sheriff's Office late Friday, 20 active searchers were looking for the teen, and personnel from the sheriff's office, Grand County Search and Rescue and National Park Service were assisting. A Department of Public Safety helicopter and Classic Helicopter were also aiding in the search.

Sources:

https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900027008/searchers-looking-for-missing-boy-scout-outside-moab.html

https://fox13now.com/2018/08/04/missing-boy-scout-reunited-with-family-father-shares-story/

https://kutv.com/news/local/boy-scout-missing-grand-countys-gemini-bridges

https://fox13now.com/2018/08/04/teenage-boy-missing-from-trail-in-grand-county-has-been-found-and-is-in-good-condition/

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Looking at this incident and g2ss is interesting. In this case the scout fell behind and then went off the trail. The buddy system should help with this but bikers get strung out so even with better buddy system you might not notice for a few minutes, certainly not the 45 minutes in the article. However, the big safety issue I would cite here was that there was no one riding sweep. That seems to me to be the way to quickly catch lagging, lost, equipment failure, etc. Interestingly, I see no mention of best group riding practices in the cycling section and no mention of sweepers anywhere in g2ss.

I don't think needs to be an adult role, but some language like, "When hiking or riding in a group patrol size or larger, it is recommended that each group have a designated responsible scout(er) in the rear in a sweep role to quickly identify any problem with lagging participants." Maybe this is somewhere in BSA docs but it wasn't easily findable. If g2ss is going to be a prescriptive as the current versions are, it would be nice if the activity sections actually included the useful info. 

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1 hour ago, oldbuzzard said:

... If g2ss is going to be a prescriptive as the current versions are, it would be nice if the activity sections actually included the useful info. 

@oldbuzzard, asking for a rule violates my rule #1.  But it might be necessary.

Common sense suggests that the SPL or his Assistant should take sweep.

When I guard a canoe trip, I do so from the rear. If a boat drifts behind without their buddy boat, we have words.

We train our backpacking scouts to stop at intersections. If a scout has to fall behind (e.g. a boot is broken) a couple of SMs hike with him and the rest of the group has to leave trail signs. There have been occasions that the lead group takes the wrong trail. We don't follow-them, we wait. Or, of we think they'll get to the destination regardless, we leave our own signs in case they decide to backtrack.

So many parents don't have patience for this, but to me this is what scouting is really all about.

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Wow, Moab this time of year?

@oldbuzzard, I'm not convinced a sweeper would have helped. It's really easy around there to get off the trail. It's a desert. It would be easy for the group to split in two, go different directions and nobody would know. It's not like the intersection is an obvious place to stop. My troop has gone there and it wasn't so much buddy system as group. We all stayed together. Being a desert, hot, dry, and plenty of opportunity to hurt yourself on a bike, we asked everyone to stay closer together and look out for each other. One ride we did was on Slick Rock and one scout's derailleur broke. We had to remove it and turn his bike into a single speed to get him home. Later on I got caught in my clips and nearly broke my wrist. Fun place!

The good news is the scout had a smile, if not a bit sheepish, on his face when he got off the copter.

 

 

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