Members Complete Water Rescue & Emergency Response Course
By Thorndale Fire Company
August 29, 2021

Story and photos are courtesy of Todd Stahl and WhiteCap Water Rescue Training. This year alone, Station 38 had 22 members complete the Water Rescue for the First Responder and 9 members complete Water Rescue and Emergency Response Course totaling 271.70 total staff training hours!

"Recently, the Thorndale Fire Company hosted a Water Rescue & Emergency Response (Ops Level) training session. This training session was provided by WhiteCap Water Rescue Training Staff Instructors, Todd Stahl, Dave Frock and Tim Doty. Thorndale FC in Chester County is located along the Route 30 Corridor continues to pursue training to better serve their community and neighboring municipalities.

Some may ask, why do they need Water Rescue training? Remember, an agency does not need to have a body of water to have flooding. Urban Flooding can happen in any municipality due to inadequate drainage and poor water run-off. Also, there are several low-lying areas that are prone to flooding. In addition, there are several ponds in the area that are used for recreational swimming, fishing and when frozen have ice skaters and individuals playing ice hockey.

This 16-hour course includes many valuable Swiftwater Rescue techniques. The course provides the base on which all other PA Fish & Boat Commission courses are built. Using both classroom, indoor pool and practical hands-on training, Water Rescue & Emergency Response covers planning, medical considerations, rescue equipment, self-rescue and shore-based rescue techniques. This course meets or exceeds NFPA 1670 Operations Level Guidelines.

The lecture part of the training was held at the Station 38, with the indoor pool sessions taking place at Lionville YMCA. The moving water session of the training was held on the Schuylkill River, Reading. Pat Taylor, Thorndale FC scheduled and coordinated this training.

The water flow on the Schuylkill River was flowing at 2,590CFS. Water temperature was 79 degrees. Weather conditions were sunny, light wind from the west. Students attending, successfully completed the indoor pool session, passed their written and practical exams for WRER. All students were properly outfitted and inspected their gear prior to arriving at the site. Attending companies for this training were; West Bradford Fire Co., Goshen Fire Company and the host Thorndale Fire Company. Upon starting the training, the students performed a site assessment and identified all hazards, shoreline conditions and water dynamics. A fantastic job by all!

Chester County Station 38 has now completed Water Rescue for the First Responder and Water Rescue & Emergency Response. In the Spring of 2022, Thorndale is hosting an Advanced Line Systems Rescue training session. WhiteCap is looking forward to this training as it will be a sell out capacity training session.

WhiteCap would like to thank Thorndale FC for their generous hospitality for supplying beverages and food throughout the weekend. Another excellent group to work with from Chester County. We look forward to working with TEAM 38 as we approach our next training session. For more information on training and or rescue equipment contact WhiteCap Water Rescue Training."

Mutual Aid: West Bradford FC, Goshen FC
Hyperlinks: WhiteCap Water Rescue
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