Thread: Swift Water Rescue- Basic Tips
01-19-2005, 02:58 AM #1
Swift Water Rescue- Basic Tips
Hello- I just got these from a SW Rescue "guru". Hope they
can help someone here.
-Do not wear turnout equipment in or around flooded areas.
Wear lighter clothing and have a change of clothes on your
apparatus to change into.
-Always wear a PFD when within 10 feet of any flooded area.
-Always have a upstream watch out when attempting a rescue
in a stream or flooded road way.
-Always have a down stream back up when attempting a rescue
in a stream or flooded road way. Throw bags or tension
diagonals are recommended.
-Always sound in front of you while walking in flooded
roadways to avoid missing manhole covers and other hazards. Recommended tactics would be: pike pole sounding, tension
diagonals or buddy system crossing (holding on to each
other for stability).
-Never tie a rope onto rescuer unless you are using proper
floatation device with rope release system!
Last edited by CALFFBOU; 01-19-2005 at 03:11 AM.
01-19-2005, 12:39 PM #2
Never did one but here's my thought.
If you throw someone a rope tie a large loop in the end so they can put it around themself. Saw the one on TV where the guy had to hold on to a rope bare handed while being pulled against the current and up onto a bridge,when he got to the end of the rope it slipped through his hands and he fell back into the water. As I said I've never done a swift water rescue, but I think the victom might have a hard time holding onto a wet 3/8" rope with his bare hands.
01-19-2005, 01:20 PM #3
Loops are generally not a good idea in swiftwater unless they have a release system as mentioned, or are tied to a suspended tensioned line to keep the persons head above water. The hydraulics of water dictate that when you are pulled taught on a throw line, either you pendulum towards the shore as intended, or you tend to be pushed under like a fishing lure. If you cannot get out of the loop you either have to cut the rope or drown. Since the victim is not considered trained, they cannot operate most release systems anyway.
The better option when using throw bags is to ensure your rope has a bag, ball, or other grippable item on the end, so if the rope does start to slide it has a bit of a "stopper". This is also why downstream safety teams are deployed. If the first team fails, the second or third team should hopefully be able to make the throw.Never argue with an Idiot. They drag you down to their level, and then beat you with experience!
01-19-2005, 01:28 PM #4
- Join Date
- Sep 2004
Yes...I agree with Mcaldwell. Loops are a no-no...
...an additional tip if you find yourself on the receiving end of a rope. Roll over on your back and you will get an air pocket as you swing towards shore...if you're on your belly facing upstream, you will likely have a facefull of water.
01-20-2005, 01:41 AM #5
- Join Date
- Jan 2000
- Somewhere in the Backcountry...
Call for assistance from trained resources. Swiftwater incidents are dynamic and you've got to get ahead of your victim to do any good.
Note Place Last Seen (PLS). Get downstream lookouts and rescue stations set-up as quickly as possible. Know your rescue points.
Do not attempt in-water contact rescues without the proper training. Adding more victims to the situation will help no one. Resist the urge to "dive in". Know defensive swimming techniques.
Remember that floods and similar events often mix lots of nasty stuff into the water. Take proper decontamination steps to avoid future problems.
01-20-2005, 01:09 PM #6
As I said I have no hands on with swift water so I was just wondering about how to make it easier for the person in the water to hang onto the rope. Since I swim like a rock there's no concern about me getting the urge to dive in. Thanks for the input guys, stay safe and dry.
01-20-2005, 02:21 PM #7
- Join Date
- Sep 2004
If you get really bored you can watch this online video about throw-ropes...it's really geared for kayakers but some of the principles are the same.
01-20-2005, 04:34 PM #8
I'll check it out as I do enjoy kayaking,canoeing,and white water rafting.
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