Swift Water Rescue is an integral part of DSRT Tavistock’s training.  Every Hill Party Member must undergo the ‘Mod 1 Water Awareness’ training to understand the risks and protocols of working around water and using basic land-based rescue techniques.

The ‘Water Team’ comprises members who have undergone further specialist training in line with DEFRA requirements to internationally recognised standards, often alongside professional rescue personnel from other emergency services:

Mod 2 Swift Water First Responder (SFR) – Working safely near and in water, using land-based and wading techniques.

As well as working around the water and undertaking bank based and shallow water wading rescues, one of the main roles of a First Responder is to support the teams of Swiftwater Rescue Technicians (SRTs) at an incident.  To enable this, a responder will have the ability to self-rescue, skills in shallow water working, basic boat handling and basic rope work.

A First Responder will be expected to help and support in technical rescue, including providing downstream safety cover or assistance with casualty handling.  Flooding operations may include evacuation of people from properties using shallow water working skills.  At a scene of major flooding the SRTs may be in short supply and utilised for technical rescues. Therefore it is First Responders who will be used to undertake the majority of evacuations and safety provision.

Mod 3: Swift Water Rescue Technician (SRT) – Specialist rescue operations.

This is the benchmark training course for swift water and flood rescue teams.  SRTs are required to carry out rescues in a swift water and flood environment, operating at the same level as other emergency services personnel, such as the Fire Brigade. This consistent standard of training means that teams all over the world train in the same fashion resulting in greater efficiency of cooperation across services during emergency situations.

DSRT Tavistock has around 12 SRTs and 9 SFRs which is an extremely high level of skills available.