America's Boating Club

United States Power Squadrons


SERAT newlogo

America's Boating Club® is encouraging all Squadrons to establish a Squadron Emergency Response Assistance Team (SERAT) to render voluntary assistance to your local Fire and Rescue Department, your local Police Department, United States Coast Guard and other local state and federal agencies in the event of a water-related emergency.

Ready to register? You may download the Registration Form HERE.


The duties of SERAT shall be to provide a team of qualified and experienced boaters with knowledge of the local waters that are willing to donate time and effort to assist in the event of an emergency. Such emergency may consist of a water rescue, water search and rescue, water related patrols and/or help in securing the area of the emergency. SERAT also performs tasks during non-emergency related incidents and planned events.​

During a water emergency, every second counts.  SERAT always coordinates its responses to emergency situations with local first responders to provide the assistance they may request.  Once or twice a year, SERAT units participate in drills with local first responders which focus on coordination between departments, so that in the case of a real emergency, all responding units are prepared.  They practice real-life water scenarios, like a fire on-board a boat and victim rescue. They treat the mannequins like real people and use these exercises to find out where break-downs in communication and performance can occur.


When on the water, every boater has a duty to minimize the loss of life, injury, property damage or loss by rendering aid to persons or vessels in distress.  America's Boating Club® is fortunate that seven Squadrons have a group of trained volunteers ready to assist local authorities in the event of a maritime emergency.

After 9/11, local agencies were tasked with supporting search and rescue (SAR) efforts along with the United States Coast Guard.  Did you know that on that day the largest ever evacuation by occurred by boat and it was completed - mostly - by volunteers?  If you haven’t watched this story “BOATLIFT” (narrated by Tom Hanks), take 10 minutes out of your life to do so:

SERAT requires that its members have more specialized skills or additional equipment than the average boater.  For example, SERAT vessels are equipped with special identifying life jackets, identifying lights and flags, back-up radio communications and expanded first aid kits.

Additionally, the standards developed by SERAT require, depending on the level of participation, its members to complete selected advanced boating courses sponsored by America's Boating Club® plus CPR/First Aid training,  In addition, some members must have successfully completed the following on-line training courses from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

All vessels used by SERAT are required to have a current Vessel Safety Check sticker as part of the program.


SERAT Vessel To learn more about SERAT, please download our Brochure HERE.



National Manual v4.03 Page 01

The Operations Manual is organized into the following sections:

Section 1 Purpose

Section 2 Team Membership

Section 3 Organization

Section 4 Coordination

Section 5 Communication and Identification

Section 6 Readiness Action Plan

Section 7 Reserved for future use

Section 8 SERAT Resources

Section 9 Standard Operating Procedures

Section 10 Forms

Section 11 Committees

Click HERE to download the manual.


Put together a group of motivated individuals that are excited about SERAT

Pass Local Squadron Executive Committee Motion or Bylaws change recognizing SERAT as an authorized activity

Local Squadron Commander appoints SERAT team leader

Complete SERAT Training Modules, including NIMS/ICS training

Notify National Committee of your progress, get assigned Squadron unit number

Begin networking with local public safety officials. Start with local Fire departments, then move on to Local police and Sheriff, then State Agencies, then USCG.


For more information or to request assistance to start a SERAT unit in your squadron, please contact:

Stf/C James Strothers, SN-IN