|Swiftwater Team Training in Deep Creek Lake, Maryland|
|By Lieutenant Patrick Livesay|
|May 22, 2019|
This past weekend, 4 members of the Gamber and Community Fire Company attended training at Adventure Sports Center International, a man-made whitewater course in Deep Creek Lake, MD. The training, Rescue from Vehicles in Water, was put on by Atlantic Technical Rescue, an international leader in water rescue and flood water training.
Gamber and Community Fire Company has the only water rescue asset in Carroll County and will respond to a variety of water rescues incidents, including swift water operations, dive rescue and recovery operations, and ice rescue operations.
Members of the department (to include chief officers and operational members), learned and practiced additional techniques to assist extricating victims who have become trapped in their vehicle due to high water conditions. The class taught water hydrology (the ability to read the water and its predicted flow path), as well as advanced extrication and rope rescue techniques.
Keep in mind, water is the most powerful force in Mother Nature. According to NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), only 6 inches, about ankle deep, of fast moving water can knock over and carry away an adult; about 12 inches of rushing water to carry away a small car (approximately mid-wheel depth); and about 2 feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles. It is NEVER safe to drive or walk into flood waters. Remember the national campaign slogan, “Turn Around, Don’t Drown.” When in doubt, it is never worth the risk, turn around and take another route. Stay Safe.