FDNY's SURF WATER RESCUE COMPANIES .....

Atlas

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“We have 16 trained Surf Rescue Companies citywide; they consist of both Engines and Ladders. Each company receives year-round training, they are equipped with rescue surf boards, wet suits for both warm and cold-water situations, rescue lines, and floatation devices. Our companies train in the ocean once a week during the summer months and as the weather gets cooler, we transition our training into indoor pools and ice-covered water. When performing rescues on the beach, we always have a primary rescuer and a secondary rescuer in the water. In addition, we always have a backup rescue team in place. The Water Rescue Training Unit began in 2004 and each year we progress our training to make sure our Firefighters and Fire Officers are well trained for these water rescue incidents. These Surf Rescue Companies are a tremendous asset for New Yorkers, whether it is assisting a surfer, someone trying to cool down in the surf, or someone training for a triathlon, we are prepared and trained to take immediate action. A lot of time we see these incidents occur when lifeguards are off duty, or people are swimming in areas where there is no lifeguard present. We urge New Yorkers to only swim in an area where a lifeguard is present,” Said FDNY Captain Anthony Romano of the Water Rescue Training Unit.

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HCO

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May 14, 2007
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Would be helpful if you could list the 16 designated units.
Thanks
 

Atlas

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After completing some research here is a list that goes back to 2020:
Bronx - L-53 & L-61.
Brooklyn - L-161, L-166, & L169
Queens - E-264. E-266, E-328, & E-329 in addition to L-121, L134, L-137, L142, & L-173
Staten Is - E-161, & E-165
 

HCO

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L-5 is one of 21 Manhattan ladders designated as "Water/Ice Rescue" units" but is not further designated a "Surf Rescue" trained unit.
 

nfd2004

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Question !
Just curious.

If a member of let's say Ladder 5 does NOT want to be a part of a surf water rescue team, is that member given preference to transfer to another company OR must the member accept this as a part of the company they are assigned to.

Also, must senior members who have spent many years in that company, now be required to become surf board experts.

I know in my own case, I would want No Part of it. Water is NOT my thing.

As they say; "Different Strokes for Different Folks".
 

scoobyd

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The company is designated, equipped and trained as a Water/Ice or Surf Rescue unit. There is no canvassing to see if members of the company can swim. There is no FDNY cert for swimming. The training does not require anything from a non-swimmer. Proby School gives a few hours of instruction in a pool, swim ability not required. And that is a relatively new addition to the program.

The attitude is literally- "Here is your equipment, here is training, good luck." So you can certainly have a response of non-swimmers.

The law of averages is the lynch pin of the entire operation.
 

nfd2004

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Thank you scoobyd.
That is exactly my problem.
I never learned how to swim

if I was on the scene of a water or ice rescue incident, if I needed to go in the water, I would tell the guys, “I probably will need you to rescue me too”.

Actually, although not in the FDNY, that was my case as a career firefighter.
Whatever it was, I would do my best but just don’t put me near that water.
 

mack

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Although most fire departments do not require ability to swim, some fire departments do require passing a department swim test prior to appointment. An example of a Florida department:


I visited a few Maui County HI firehouses last year and they have a 100-meter swim test. The firefighters I spoke to indicated how important that was due to the countless beach incidents they respond to.

Swimming ability definitely would be a requirement for department firefighters assigned to marine units and special units with water rescue duties. But also, swimming ability would be beneficial to all firefighters who respond to swimming pool, lake, beach, sewer, reservoir, pier, waterfront, boating and downed aircraft incidents.

Many firefighters have also unfortunately lost their lives in flooded basements and cellars. FDNY unfortunately has many related LODDs.

Although a desired skill for firefighters, it is probably an expensive challenge for departments to establish swimming tests and training - especially for all applicants.
 
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