Locals certify in swiftwater rescue
August 9, 2017
Genny Hoyle photo
Employees of the Kootenai Tribe and members of four Boundary County emergency response organizations earned swiftwater rescue certification this week.
Eighteen emergency responders and employees of the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho were certified as Swiftwater Rescue Technicians on August 6. Boundary Search and Dive Rescue Team Inc. hosted the class, put on by Whitewater Rescue Institute of Missoula, Montana, August 4-6.

First responders from Boundary Search and Dive Rescue, Boundary County Sheriff's Office, Boundary Volunteer Ambulance and South Boundary Fire Protection District, along with employees of the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho Fisheries Program, all participated in the class, learning the ins and out of swiftwater rescue.

The class included a four hour classroom lecture and two days of practical scenario-based training on the Kootenai River at the Yaak Campground.

Students learned the essential skills of swiftwater rescue including hydrology, rescue organization, communication, entrapment and extrication, stranded swimmers and self rescue techniques.

The class meets national Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) Standards 1006 and 1670, and is the standard for professional swiftwater rescue teams nationwide.