Managing Land Search Operations Course (MLSO)

Course Description

Just like good, down to earth, detective work is sometimes required to solve a difficult crime, good investigation and the application of basic ‘search theory’ principles can make the difference on a difficult search. It’s very hard to make the leap into the ‘big leagues’ of liability, the media and distraught relatives if you only have cursory knowledge of search.

Who Should Attend

  • Police Officers
  • Police Search Advisers (POLSA)
  • Police and other agency Search Managers
  • Missing person or search and rescue specialists
  • Police supervisors
  • Detectives and those responsible for case investigation and review
  • Control room staff and call-takers
  • Search and rescue team Search Managers/Controllers
  • Search and rescue team leaders
  • Coastguard staff

Course Content

  • A National and International SAR Picture. (Methodology and Best Practices)

  • Case Study Lessons Learned

  • The Six Step Management Process.

  • Developing a Plan, First Notice and Determining Urgency.

  • Reflex Tasking and Incident Management. (ICS)

  • Investigation and Interviewing.

  • Latest Missing Person Behaviour Data.

  • Designating, Tracking and Prioritizing the Search Area using Subject Behaviour Data.

  • Latest POD Research and ‘Sweep Width’.

  • Practical Application of Search Theory.

  • Target Orientation, Vision and POD Data.

  • Briefing and Debriefing.

  • Legal Issues and Public Expectations.

  • Searching in the Urban Environment.

  • Use of Computer Technology and Search Management. Software.

  • Aerial Support with Digital Mapping.

  • Review of Research and Field Experiments.

Course Objectives

On successful completion of this course, participants should:

  • Have awareness of the technical knowledge needed to run a major search incident.

  • Understand the value of local lost subject data applied to current strategies & search tactics.

  • Learned lessons from research & ‘best practices’ from multi-country experience.

  • Put into practice the comprehensive planning & coordination based on multi-country police search success.

  • Have gained specialist knowledge about the behaviour of certain categories of missing persons such as children & those suffering from Dementia of Alzheimer’s disorder.

  • Have benefited from networking with other police personnel on common search incident problems.

Course Duration

  • 5 day: The initial Managing Land Search Operations 5-day course is designed for those who have the responsibility to plan and prepare for search operations in remote, rural or urban environments. This course and its accompanying student materials are now the search management “standard” in nine countries. This is not a field skills course; it is management oriented. Participants will learn how to plan for, organize and manage a search effort for missing persons using the latest management principles and organisational structure. Emphasis in the course is on resources needed to do the job right and a recurring cycle of management processes that use the latest forms and techniques. Small group discussion and 4 actual case study tabletop map exercises are used throughout the course.


  • North East Wales Institute (NEWI), Mold Road, Wrexham, North Wales. Location map by Multimap (Now renamed Glyndŵr University)


  • please contact us


  • £1095 + VAT fully inclusive. Or

  • £895 + VAT without accommodation.
    (See details below)

  • Additional night’s (B & B) accommodation before the course costs an extra £85 + VAT.

Payment Details

Bookings from private individuals & organisations must be accompanied by payment unless prior arrangements have been made. Invoices will be issued to Police, Local & Central Government Departments as soon as bookings are received. Accounts from such organisations can be settled prior to the course or within thirty days of its conclusion.

What The Course Fees Include

  1. All student materials, (A 560 page A4 size course manual which will become the students reference textbook; a newly published Handbook for quick & easy reference, & all necessary exercise materials.

  2. Full support from experienced staff who will be available for extra instruction during the evenings if necessary.

  3. Any student requiring help with map reading will be sent a pre-read & given help as necessary during the course.

  4. Full cooked breakfast (if accommodation booked).

  5. Buffet lunch & evening meal.

  6. Accommodation for four nights in a single room en-suite (if booked).

To book this course, or for more information, please contact Mike Rose at

Tailor-made courses and in-force training courses are also available.

Please contact us to discuss your requirements.