The International Commission For Alpine Rescue (ICAR)

ICAR meeting in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
ICAR meeting in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia

Previously known as the IKAR-CISA, ICAR research into mountain rescue operations and standards goes back to 1948, and their work has affected the improvement of rescue operations everywhere in the world. The ICAR has 31 member countries who meet regularly and whose activities are closely followed by the climbing and manufacturing communities in Europe and other countries. ICAR celebrated its 50th anniversary in Switzerland in 2008.

The ICAR permits one voting delegate from each country to each of the four committees, Terrestrial, Avalanche, Medical and Aviation. ICAR requires delegates to be field-experienced rescue team leaders who are preferred to have bilingual capabilities (German or French, although English is becoming more common). In its recent meetings the ICAR has provided professional translators and first rate simultaneous translation through headphones at the annual events. US delegates provide an annual report to various SAR audiences each year and are expected to attempt to impact SAR by cooperation across the borders, and standardization, such as with International SAR and Wilderness Accident Statistics.

Individual ICAR commissions generally meet at least twice per year, although this is at times combined with the annual meeting. In September or October each year the entire ICAR congress meets for presentations, papers and demonstrations. The Reports of US delegates are listed on this page.

Joint cooperation by NASAR (National Association for Search and Rescue), the MRA (Mountain Rescue Association) ICSAR (US Federal Interagency Commission for SAR), the Wilderness Medical Society, Helicopter Association International, National Ski Patrol, Association of Avalanche Professionals, and additional financial support from CMC Rescue have enabled the US delegation.

This Is ICAR from Topograph Media on Vimeo.

ICAR Website

2019 – Zakopane, Poland

2018 – Chamonix, France

2017 – Soldeu, Andora

2016 – Borovets, Bulgaria

2015 – Killarney – Ireland

2014 – Lake Tahoe – United State

2013 – Bol – Croatia

2012 – Krynica – Poland

2011 – Are – Sweden

2010 – Stary Smocovec – Slovakia



IKAR meeting in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
IKAR meeting in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia


2009 – Zermatt – Switzerland

2008 – Chamonix – France

2007 – Pontresina – Switzerland

2006 – Kranjska Gora – Slovenia

2005 – Cortina – Italy

2004 – Zakopane – Poland



IKAR meeting in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
IKAR meeting in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia


2003 – Coyulumbridge – Scotland

2002 – Malbun Liechtenstein

2001 – Makarska – Croatia

U.S. ICAR participation is supported by



Mountain Rescue Association[/one_half]



National Association for Search and Rescue[/one_half_last]

[one_half]CMC Rescue