Georgetown firefighters train for swift water rescues

Firefighters in Georgetown are getting ready for a busy season on the water.
Published: Apr. 26, 2022 at 10:40 PM EDT
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GEORGETOWN, Ky. (WKYT) - Firefighters in Georgetown are getting ready for a busy season on the water.

Between the nice weather and people getting outdoors, and severe weather events, first responders want to be ready for any situation.

The Georgetown Fire Department crews got suited up for a practice Swift Water Rescue Mission. They see an increase in these type of rescues in the spring and summer seasons, which make this the perfect time to practice.

The radio calls came in, crews gathered for instruction, they suited up, and headed out down the creek at Oser Landing. While this situation seems intense, it’s actually a training scenario so swift water technicians can learn how to rescue people in a controlled environment.

There was a live victim and a practice dummy positioned up and down the creek. Crews were given search areas, and then they went out to search and rescue victims from different areas.

Battalion Chief Revel Oliver said they make a lot of rescues during flash flooding, like people who have driven through high water on the roadways and get stranded.

They also sometimes have to rescue kayakers and canoers, so it’s best they learn what to do now.

“At least here we’re in a controlled environment. A lot of times when we do have a flash flood or have somebody stuck in a vehicle out on the water, it’s not this controlled. So we can more safely do it here, than getting out there and learning at the time of the job,” Oliver said.

Oliver said a few months ago, they had four rescue missions in one night. These were people who had driven through high water and needed to be saved from their vehicles. It’s another reminder to always turn around, don’t drown.

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