Water Rescue Technician Course
The Water Rescue Technician (WRT) Course is a fast-paced, comprehensive 9-hour training and educational program specifically designed for Public Safety and Rescue Professionals, including Law Enforcement, Fire, Rescue, EMS and Lifeguard Personnel.
The Awareness and Operational levels are designed as a foundational course for all public safety and rescue professionals, regardless of their swimming ability or experience in, on or around the water. Technician level course participants must be in good physical condition, and be comfortable and able to propel themselves in deep water while wearing a lifejacket.
The Awareness level classroom consists of a 4.5 hour classroom session. The Operations and Technician levels also include a 4.5 hour practical session.
The focus of this one-day training program is on the prevention, recognition and management of drowning and aquatic injuries, surface water rescue and survival principles and procedures. It is designed to provide public safety and rescue professional with the knowledge and skills required to safely and effectively respond to rescue and recovery incidents in, on, and around the water.
Subjects and/or practical evolutions include the following:
- Physiology/Mechanisms of Drowning
- Principles of Water Rescue and Survival
- Threat Analysis and Pre-Incident Planning
- Types and Uses of Personal Flotation Devices
- Shore-based Non-swimming Rescues
- Basic Contact and Swimming Rescues
- Cold Water Rescue and Survival
- Ice Rescue and Survival
- Swiftwater Rescue and Survival
- Firefighter Survival in the Water
- Management of Aquatic Spinal Injuries
- Personal Defense and Survival Maneuvers
- Incident Command
The 9-hour Water Rescue Technician Course is scheduled from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Sign-in begins at 7:30 AM. A classroom session is conducted from 08:00 - 12:30 hrs., followed by 4.5-hour in-water practical session. Certificates are awarded to those who successfully meet all educational course objectives including: (A) participation in classroom session, and (B) completion of all practical evolutions.
FIREFIGHTER SURVIVAL IN THE WATER Video Clip
This video clip represents skill evolutions demonstrated and practiced as part of the Water Rescue Technician Course. Watch Now (QuickTime 26Mb)
The WRT Candidate must be in good physical condition and must be able to effectively propel themselves in the water and be comfortable in deep water while wearing a Lifejacket.
All practical evolutions, with the exception of some shallow water skills and the Firefighter Survival evolutions, are performed while wearing a Personal Flotation Device (PFD). No other prerequisites are required.
Participants must wear either long pants and t-shirt (or wetsuit) and tennis shoes (or wetsuit booties). All participants must also wear a lifejacket and helmet, both provided by Lifesaving Resources, during the practical sessions.
Individuals who participate in a Water Rescue Technician Course and who successfully complete the classroom session and the final written examination, but who cannot participate or successfully complete the practical session, will be awarded a Water Rescue Awareness certificate.
Continuing Education Credit
9-hours of continuing education units are typically awarded by state and/or national professional associations such as the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians for completion of this training course, should you wish to arrange this in advance. This curriculum meets and exceeds NFPA 1670 Standard for Technical Rescue.
Gerald M. Dworkin (Gerry) is a professional Aquatics Safety & Water Rescue Consultant for Lifesaving Resources, LLC and is the author of the "Lifeguard Competition Guidebook", the "Professional Aquatics Safety Seminar Guidebook", the "Water Rescue Course Guidebook", and the "Ice Rescue Course Guidebook" (published by Lifesaving Resources) and "CPR for Infants and Children" (published by the Child Welfare League of America).
Gerry has an extensive background in Aquatics Safety, Water Rescue, Ice Rescue, EMS, and Public Safety and Rescue. Along with his textbooks, he has written and published over 40 articles, and has consulted in over 265 drowning and aquatic injury litigation cases as either a Plaintiff or Defense Forensics Expert.
A graduate from the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut, Gerry has over 30 years experience as a Professional and/or Volunteer Firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), and has worked and consulted for the American Red Cross as a Health and Safety Services Professional/Consultant. As a frequent guest speaker and trainer in the Lifeguard and Aquatics Safety and Recreation sector, as well as the Public Safety and Rescue sector, Gerry is considered an expert and qualified educator throughout the country.
In 2010, Gerry was named by Aquatics International Magazine as one of the Power 25 Aquatic Professionals in the U.S. He serves on the Board of Directors of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA.org); a Sounding Board for the National Headquarters of the American Red Cross Lifeguard Training Curriculums; and on an Advisory Committee for the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
Gerry has appeared as a subject matter expert on such national media broadcasts as CNN; MSNBC News; CBS' Early Show; ABC's Good Morning America; NBC's Today Show; The Weather Channel; The Discovery Channel; and the Fire Emergency Training Network (FETN), and The History Channel, and he is frequently contacted for interviews by publications throughout the U.S. on matters pertaining to submersion incidents; Lifeguard operations and management; submerged vehicle incidents; aquatics safety; water rescue; and ice rescue.
Gerry has been a Firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician for over 40 years, and was a career Firefighter/EMT with the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department in Virginia. He is currently a Firefighter/EMT with the Kennebunkport Fire Department in Maine.
Greg is a 2003 graduate of the Ice Rescue Train-the-Trainer Program and is the newest member of our Ice Rescue Training Programs Faculty. Greg is a Lieutenant and Emergency Medical Technician with the Northwood Fire and Rescue Department in Northwood, New Hampshire.
Bob is a Captain for the Cumberland Rescue Service in Cumberland, Rhode Island with 20 years experience as a Paramedic and Firefighter. He is the team coordinator for the Cumberland Water Rescue Team and co-coordinator for the Blackstone Valley Regional Dive Team. Bob is a graduate of the Lifesaving Resources' 2006 Water Rescue Train-the-Trainer Academy and the 2008 Ice Rescue Instructor Train-the-Trainer Academy, and also assists Lifesaving Resources in the conduct of Lifeguard In-service Training Programs.
Dave has 20+ years in Law Enforcement and is currently a part-time detective with the Sandown (NH) Police Department. He is currently on faculty with Lifesaving Resources as a Water/Swiftwater Rescue and Ice Rescue Instructor. He has experience as an EMT-B; as a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver; as a competitive swimmer; and as a Red Cross Lifeguard. He currently works as a Corporate Consultant and Trainer for a company teaching and implementing continuous improvement systems.
Upon receipt of registration and payment information, a confirmation packet will be sent that includes directions, lodging facilities, and further information.
The fee for the one day training program may vary depending upon the course location and facilities being used, and includes:
- a comprehensive Water Rescue Technician Course Guidebook
- snack and lunch
- course completion certificate and insignia, valid for 5 years, upon successful completion of the course