The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission developed the Pennsylvania water rescue course to train fire and rescue department personnel in the most current techniques of boating and water safety. This course content meets NFPA 1670 – Standards on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents – Surface and Swiftwater Awareness Level.
The goals of the course are to:
- Provide essential water safety information to first responders.
- Familiarize the rescuer with the proper procedures used in basic water safety and safe boat handling.
- Have the rescuer demonstrate a proficiency in water rescue relative to individual capabilities.
- Provide the rescuer with competency in dealing with on-the-water emergencies.
To accomplish these goals, the course covers:
- The need for surface and swiftwater search and rescue
- Scene safety, assessment, control, and management
- Evaluation of potential and existing water hazards
- Resources needed to perform water operations (Operations and Technician-level personnel and teams)
- Personal and team safety measures (training and personal protective equipment (PPE))
- Water rescue training
- Personal protective equipment (PPE)
- Activation of the Emergency Response System
- Rescue versus recovery operations