In a vast majority of cases the team are called out by the Police to assist in the search for missing people from a variety of backgrounds. A missing person could be someone living with dementia who had left home, someone suffering mental health issues or despondency, or the perhaps more expected walkers lost on the moors in poor weather.
The Police will coordinate the search and speak to family and friends to build a profile of the missing person. Once a series of checks (eg home, phone, hospital, custody) have been made a search strategy is devised and the team may be called out if the search areas identified cover woodland, parkland, open areas or moorland. The team can also run urban searches, but these are more often covered by Police officers.
Team search managers are then contacted by the Police via a text alert system and will liaise with a Police LPSM (Lost Person Search Manager) to identify key tasks for the team. Once these are agreed the team are called out and text alerts will be going off across the west of the Duchy. Members will then RV at a single location and deploy out into search areas, whether as small foot teams, bank search teams, rope teams or working with MRSDE (Mountain Rescue Search Dogs England) dog handlers.
Further details of how a search operate can be found in this very comprehensive online piece.