Operation Dark Squeeze Held in Canada’s Crowsnest Pass

September 30, 2011 / Canada, North America
Middle entrance of Canada's Gargantua Cave

Photo by James Heilman, MD

From September 16th to 18th a huge cave rescue exercise took place at Gargantua Cave system located in Canada’s Crowsnest Pass.

Dubbed, Operation Dark Squeeze, the event, organized by the Alberta Cave Rescue Organization (ARCO) and Search and Rescue Alberta saw close to 100 people attend.

Numerous groups from both Alberta and British Columbia were given the opportunity to practice and demonstrate their skills.

At 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) long and 286 meters (938 feet) deep, Gargantua cave rests on the Alberta/BC boarder. Containing the Canada’s largest natural cavern at 290 meters (951 feet) long, 30 meters (98 feet) wide and 25 meters (82 feet) high, it is a popular location for cavers.

The site of multiple incidents in the past, including one last month, Gargantua Cave was a perfect spot for the exercise.

More than just a cave rescue, the subjects will have to be rescued from the cave and then evacuated down the mountain making use of trucks, ATVs and helicopters. To help pay for the costs of such an exercise, the Alberta Emergency Management Agency issed a $80,000 provincial training grant earlier this year.

Rescue in need of recruits [Pincher Creek Echo] & Exercise Dark Squeeze [Crowsnest Pass Hearld]

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