Club members should tell their partners to contact the Walks Coordinator, President or other committee members if walkers have not returned by a reasonable time.
If the leader has not reported in by a reasonable time (e.g. 30 minutes after dark), the Walks Coordinator will attempt to contact the leader.
If the Walks Coordinator has been unable to contact the leader involved (or anyone else known to be on that walk) by about 8pm (or later if warranted), the Walks Coordinator will notify the President (or another committee member if the President is unavailable or on the missing walk).
The President will contact as many people as necessary to ascertain whether the overdue walk has actually failed to return. If this is found to be the case, and if there is no further news by 9pm, the President will inform the Nowra police of the situation.
The police have prime responsibility for searches in the Shoalhaven. They will want to know details such as the planned walk route, fitness levels, equipment carried, names and number of people they will be looking for (we usually won't have an accurate list until next of kin or emergency contacts start telling us - and this will surprise the police!).
To avoid unnecessary worrying (and embarrassment) by families and unnecessary workload on the Walks Coordinator and President, leaders should have the telephone numbers of the Walks Coordinator and several other Committee members with them on the walk. They, or somebody on the walk with a mobile phone, should make the appropriate calls as soon as they are within telephone coverage. They should not wait until they get back home.
If someone on the walk does get a call through to a partner, they should ask that person to relay the information to the Walks Coordinator or President.
In the unlikely event that a search becomes necessary, the President will begin assembling a team of available club members to assist the police. The President will then inform the police of the availability of these volunteers, and continue to liaise with them until the search and rescue operation is completed.