Swift Water Rescue

Swiftwater/Flood Rescue Operations

River or (flood) rescues represent the second level of aquatic rescues which is a step above lake, a step below swiftwater, and considerably below whitewater. However, even that gentle stream that you can usually wade through can become a life-threatening force after a sudden downpour. To put things into perspective: Today, firefighters are 400% more likely to drown than to die in a fire. This class is designed to be “shore based” and “boat based”. We teach you the swimming skills you can use to save yourself if you end up in the water unexpectedly.

Our two-day Awareness/Operations course covers shore based and tethered boat rescues.


The day is spent in the classroom covering:

  • Essential knots and rigging
  • How to read the river
  • Patient handling
  • Throw bag techniques including vectoring lines
  • Up-stream spotters and down-stream safety back-ups
  • Use of floating hose lines
  • Whistle commands and hand signals for communications


The day is spent on site for hands-on training:

  • Defensive and offensive survival swimming techniques
  • Wading drills
  • Throw bag rescues
  • Methods to avoid and confront “strainers”. (The number one killer of victims and rescuers who end up being swept down-stream)
  • Tethered boat rescues
  • Highline boat rescues

Our 16 hour class is NFPA compliant. Open enrollment dates June 4-5, 2016, or at your location.

Use the Contact page to request more information.

Technician Level Swiftwater Rescue

This physically demanding two day class builds on the skills learned in the operations level class.

Successful completion of a 1000′ endurance swim is required.

  • Each morning starts with offensive and defensive swims
  • Throw bag drills to re-enforce skills
  • Diagonal highlines
  • Snowfence drills
  • Tethered rescue swimmer
  • Zipline patient transfers

A practical skills test completes the 16 hour class at the end of the second day.

Students are required to supply their own PPE.

Pre-requisite: NFPA Operations level certification


Use the Contact page to request more information.