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Meet the Conservancy's Rangers
The Island's First Responders
If a brush fire erupts in the interior, if a plane or helicopter crashes, if a vehicle goes off the road, chances are, a Conservancy Ranger will be first on the scene. They are the eyes and ears of not only the Conservancy, but of many other law enforcement and public safety agencies on patrol to ensure the safety of visitors and residents as well as ensuring the safety of the Island.
Their vehicles are now equipped with state-of-the-art communications and global positioning system equipment. They regularly train and cross-train with the Los Angeles Sherriff's Department, Los Angeles County Fire Department and Baywatch to improve their skills in assessing the severity of an emergency and to better coordinate communications for proper response to the incident.
Lost hikers, lost swimmers and enforcement of the rules of the road are all the concerns of the Conservancy Rangers. They will also give a thirsty hiker a bottle of water, dispense directions and advise on how to get around a bison herd. On any given day, rangers may share their knowledge of the Island with visitors, tell them about conservation efforts under way or give them tips on where to go and what to see.
Text and photos by Bob Rhein (unless otherwise noted)