Photo Courtesy of CFVSAR


A CFVSAR volunteer practises rescue techniques in an ice-covered river.

Theft from a search-and-rescue compound in the Fraser Valley has plunged the community into danger, rescuers said yesterday.

A thermal imaging camera valued at $10,000 was among the items stolen during a break in at the Central Fraser Valley Search and Rescue (CFVSAR) headquarters.

"It puts the community in jeopardy," said Colin Wiebe, a director with CFVSAR. "We’re missing vital equipment."

Thieves entered a fenced and gated compound at 1594 Riverside Rd. in Abbotsford. Once inside, they broke open the rear doors of the team’s rapid response vehicle and into a support trailer.

"They’re certainly still operational, but when you lose a generator, a thermal imager and a medical pack … there is no doubt it impacts their ability to respond," said Staff Sgt. Tom Chesley.

Wiebe estimates the value of equipment stolen as between $20,000 and $30,000, much of which was purchased through years of fundraising.


  • CFVSAR is comprised of 30 volunteers and responds to 40 to 45 rescues a year.

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