(Photo: Global Rescue)
Who do you call when an earthquake traps you on Mount Everest? You can Global Rescue. If you are their client, they will get you out . . .
. . . for a price.
This is the emerging world of private search and rescue operations. Global Rescue is one of several firms of ex-special forces and top-end medical professionals that will find you and bring you home alive. This service appeals to adventure travelers, who are willing to pay the several hundred dollar annual subscription fee. Wired reports on the industry and Global Rescue founder Dan Richards:
He saw a niche that needed filling. At the time, companies like International SOS provided risk assessments to big corporations sending employees overseas, while travel insurance companies allowed customers to file for reimbursement for services like evacuation or lost luggage. Groups like MedjetAssist, meanwhile, provided evacuation services from international hospitals. But there wasn’t a company with the capability to quickly dispatch both helicopters and security personnel to hard-to-reach places—something Richards realized while researching investment opportunities in the crisis-response industry. “When you call the cavalry, you expect the cavalry to show up,” he says.
Richards soon hired five paramedics with military experience, negotiated a partnership with the Johns Hopkins Department of Emergency Medicine to provide clients with remote medical consultations, and started reaching out to helicopter companies and current and former military personnel around the globe that he could hire on a contract basis. He began to sign up corporate clients that paid hefty annual fees for memberships that included evacuation privileges. The State Department, NASA, and Uber soon signed up for similar deals.
-via Ace of Spades HQ