Swiftwater & River Rescue

Swift water rescue training, sometimes referred to as whitewater rescue, deals with operations in rapidly moving rivers. Dealing with the pressure of moving water, ropes, and mechanical systems requires highly specialized training. The ultimate goal is to rescue trapped humans or animals, which is no easy task when dealing with the power of rapidly moving water.

Often, the best whitewater rescue relies on the victim to, in essence, rescue themselves. This is done by talking to them about strategies while they are in danger. Often, it is a simple matter of grabbing hold of an extended rope and being towed to safety. The danger increases when rescue personnel have to enter the water themselves.

Technical Rescuer - Water: Levels I & II

Swift Water Rescue Training Materials

Swift water rescue training uses the Incident Command System (ICS), a national protocol that is used for managing US emergencies and the benchmark for disaster management in this country. By using ICS, emergency responders from multiple agencies can work together to craft a solution to whatever rescue operation is at hand, including whitewater rescue.

One of the key elements of whitewater rescue and ICS is a risk algorithm. This formula assesses the various rescue methods for whitewater rescue and determines whether a rescuer will endanger themselves in addition to the victim. This tool helps to determine the best swift water rescue training and tactics in a sometimes stressful situation.

Firefighters Bookstore has put together an excellent collection detailing swift water and river rescue tactics. Some highlights of the collection include:

  • “Technical Rescuer: Water Levels I and II” covers all five of the sub-disciplines of water rescue as referenced in the National Fire Protection Association 1006 (2008): surface water rescue, ice rescue, swiftwater rescue, surf rescue, and dive rescue. The book also adds a bonus chapter on watercraft. Each chapter starts with a “Lessons Learned” section and ends with “Lessons Revisited,” plus self-testing questions.

  • “Swiftwater Rescue: A Manual for the Rescue Professional, Revised and Expanded” provides an in-depth look at swiftwater and flood rescue for firefighters, park rangers, and EMS personnel. Topics include basic rescuer safety considerations; river hydrology; equipment; shore-based, boat-based, and in-water rescue techniques; medical considerations; rigging for river rescue; incident command; and swiftwater training. It also covers advanced topics such as the use of helicopters in swiftwater rescue, and special situations such as low-head dams and flood channel rescues. Swiftwater and Flood Rescue Field Guide

  • “Swiftwater and Flood Rescue Field Guide” is a concise aid that covers SOPs, incident size-up, swiftwater rescue code, the hierarchy of rescue responses and other issues. The guide is meant to be used to define best practices in emergency situations.

Firefighters Bookstore is the resource of choice for firefighters, emergency responders, family, friends and fire buffs.  We have been in business for over 25 years, providing books, videos, training manuals and other items that are used extensively for training and educating emergency responders. We also offer novels, memoirs and other products that will entertain anyone interested in the brave men and women who are first on the scene.

Need our expertise?  Firefighters Bookstore specializes in working with libraries and other institutions that would like to build out their own collection of emergency responder information. Call us today and use our expertise to craft the perfect collection for your needs. Call us at 714-375-4888 or email us at CustomerService@firebooks.com - we look forward to hearing from you!

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