Pascack firefighters getting certified in swift water rescue

SPECIAL REPORT: With floods increasing in the area, the Pascack Valley Firemens Association organized a three-day course to certify its members in swift-water rescue.

Photo Credit: A HOT STORY?
Photo Credit: A HOT STORY?
Photo Credit: A HOT STORY?

The second of two hands-on training sessions this weekend was continuing this morning and this afternoon at the Lake Tappan Dam in River Vale.

From today’s Pascack Valley swift water rescue training (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)

The three-day course also included classroom training Friday night and time in the water yesterday.

Among those participating are firefighters from Westwood, Emerson, Hillsdale, River Vale, Washington Township, Woodcliff Lake and Old Tappan, among other area towns.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Participants are invited to send photos and/or comments (anonymously or to be identified — your choice) by clicking here: GOT A TIP, A PHOTO, A HOT STORY?

Some of them trained earlier this year with the Bergen County Police Water Search & Recovery Unit at the Ramapo Valley County Reservation in Mahwah. They also trained with Bergen County’s OEM in 2011 after Hurricane Irene sent a jolt through the valley.

The group routinely conducts drills, hoping to improve skills — and aware that it often takes far less than an historic storm to suddenly flood area neighborhoods.

Pascack’s swift water rescuers were among the most active in New Jersey during Hurricane Sandy, saving trapped residents in Moonachie, Little Ferry and Carlstadt.

A short time later, several of them rushed to the barrier islands — with full crews, trucks and engines — for 24- to 48-hour shifts aiding in the rescue efforts there.

to follow Daily Voice Rutherford and receive free news updates.