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Military Search and Rescue Operations Specialists

Military Career

General Information


Search and rescue operations specialists are responsible for locating personnel in distress, delivering them to safety, and providing necessary medical care. They operate in a range of environments and often require skills such as swimming/diving or parachuting. They may use advanced communications and imaging equipment to assist search and rescue efforts and are sometimes involved in the recovery of military equipment.

Work Environment

Search and rescue specialists work and train on military bases, ships, or submarines. They may encounter harsh weather, often without protection, during missions in enemy–controlled areas. They may be exposed to smoke or flames if fighting fires.

Comparable Industries

  • Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security
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Military Outlook

Service Branches

Jobs in this career field may be available in other service branches. Call or email a particular branch for more info.

Military Status

  • Enlisted
    • Hands-on/specialized
    • High school diploma required

Military Workforce

Search and Rescue Operations Specialists in the Military


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Salary Information

Median Military Salary This is the median, or the midpoint, of the salary range for this career.


Military Salary Range Salary varies based on years of service, degree level, special pays, family status and location. Learn more about Military benefits.

$23,543 - $228,684

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Military training

All enlisted service members complete basic military training, which includes time spent in a classroom and in the field, and covers tactical and survival skills, physical training, military life and customs, and weapons training. Search and rescue specialists gain skills through classes and on-the-job experience. Training content may include: Rescue and recovery operationsParamedic EMT first aid proceduresCombat Survival trainingUnderwater Egress TrainingPhysical conditioning, parachuting, swimming, and scuba divingUse of land warfare weapons and communication devicesFirefighting systems and equipment operations and inspectionsExplosives handling and disposalBomb and mine disposal

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