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ID
8-509-1236
Name
Swiftwater/Flood Search and Rescue Technician
Status
Published
Version
1.4
Updated
3/10/2021 10:12:18 AM
Original Release
03/09/2021
Last Major Release
03/10/2021
Resource Category
Search and Rescue
Primary Core Capability
Mass Search and Rescue Operations
Secondary Core Capability
 
Resource Kind
Personnel
Overall Function
The Swiftwater/Flood Search and Rescue (SAR) Technician performs search, rescue and recovery operations in various water environments.
Single resource
In conjunction with a NIMS typed team
NIMS Typed Team
Swiftwater/Flood Search and Rescue Team
In conjunction with a NIMS typed unit
NIMS Typed Unit
 
Description Notes
Basic ground support for helicopter operations includes safety awareness and Landing Zone (LZ) knowledge.
Supporting Core Capabilities
None
Types
Type Description
Type 1The Swiftwater/Flood SAR Technician: 1. Performs search, rescue and recovery activities in the following settings: a. Water environments including swiftwater and swiftwater/flood b. Shore, water and boat-based rescue operations c. Situations involving human or animal rescue 2. Provides medical care for self, team members and survivors, including Basic Life Support (BLS) for others 3. Reports to a Swiftwater/Flood SAR Team Leader 4. Operates within the Incident Command System (ICS), in an entry-level position within the Swiftwater/Flood SAR Team 5. Ensures safety of self and team members 6. Provides basic ground support for helicopter operations 7. Coordinates with ground vehicles, watercraft and aircraft for support, transportation and evacuation 8. Operates in environments with and without infrastructure, including environments: a. Affected by disasters and terrorism b. With disrupted access to roadways, utilities and transportation c. With limited access to shelter, food and water
Components
Component Notes  
EducationNot Specified
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Not Specified
TrainingNot Specified
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1Completion of the following: 1. Training outlined for the NIMS Type 2 Land SAR Technician 2. Training in water operations in water with a current of 1 knot or greater 3. National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), ASTM International (ASTM) or equivalent swiftwater SAR training program that the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) has verified and that covers the following position-specific skills and aptitudes: a. Nighttime water SAR operations b. Search methods in swiftwater and swiftwater/flood environments c. Water rescue scene management and dynamic risk assessment d. Basic boat handling with paddle and rope systems e. Specialized rescue equipment f. Extrication techniques g. Animal hazards and safety protocols h. Use, care, inspection and maintenance of related Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) tools, devices and equipment specific to this position
ExperienceNFPA 1006: Standard for Technical Rescue Personnel Professional Qualifications and NFPA 1670: Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents address additional knowledge, skills and abilities that apply to this position.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 11. Completion of Swiftwater/Flood SAR Technician Position Task Book (PTB), or equivalent AHJ documentation, including the following tasks: a. Demonstrate a working knowledge of hydrology and associated hazards, including the recognition of water features and their impact b. Understand search procedures in the water environment c. Demonstrate swimming and maneuvering skills d. Understand ferry angle concepts e. Understand and apply relevant rescue techniques, including Talk, Reach, Throw, Row, Go/Tow and Helicopter f. Demonstrate rigging and operating of rope systems g. Demonstrate awareness of flooding and associated hazards and their impact on medical problems associated with water h. Identify and explain the hazards and implications of entrapment i. Understand characteristics, medical issues, extrication techniques and contamination issues for locks, sluices, irrigation ditches and low-head dams j. Understand characteristics, design/hydrology and specific rescue techniques for vehicles and objects (strainers) in water k. Demonstrate knowledge of behavior, hydrology, access and stabilization techniques related to helicopters l. Identify and explain the hazards and difficulties of working in darkness and reduced-visibility conditions, and explain how to apply suitable control measures 2. Ability to carry out the following: a. Rescue procedures in a swiftwater and swiftwater/flood environment during day and night operations b. Rope rescue c. Water rescue
Physical/Medical FitnessThe NIMS Guideline for the National Qualification System (NQS) defines physical/medical fitness levels for NIMS positions.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 11. Arduous 2. Meets minimum physical fitness and swimming standards, in accordance with the AHJ’s job-related physical ability test (JRPAT) 3. Maintains AHJ-determined physical fitness standards suitable for the environment and typing; NFPA 1582: Standard on Comprehensive Occupational Medical Program for Fire Departments meets or exceeds this physical fitness standard 4. Maintains immunizations in accordance with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) immunization recommendations
CurrencyProvider must carry out and use any background checks as applicable law specifies. This may include a background check completed within the past 12 months; a sex-offender registry check; and a local, state and national driving and criminal history.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 11. Annual refresher of related SAR skills and abilities in water environments 2. Functions in this position during an operational incident, planned event, exercise, drill or simulation at least once every three years 3. Background checks as applicable law permits or requires 4. Keeps immunizations up to date and commensurate with mission assignment
Professional and Technical Licenses and CertificationsAHJ determines which emergency medical certifications meet the minimum criteria, which could include first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and BLS.
Component Types
Type Criteria
Type 1AHJ-required BLS-level medical care certification or recertification
Composition and Ordering Specifications
Specification
Discuss logistics for deploying this position, such as working conditions, length of deployment, security, lodging, transportation and meals, prior to deployment.
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Notes
References
Reference
FEMA, NIMS 508: Swiftwater/Flood Search and Rescue Team
FEMA, NIMS 509: Land Search and Rescue Technician
FEMA, NIMS 509: Swiftwater/Flood Search and Rescue Team Leader
FEMA, National Incident Management System (NIMS), October 2017
FEMA, NIMS Guideline for the National Qualification System, November 2017
FEMA, National Response Framework, October 2019
ASTM International (ASTM) F2890: Standard Guide for Hazard Awareness for Search and Rescue Personnel, latest edition adopted
National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1006: Standard for Technical Rescue Personnel Professional Qualifications, latest edition adopted
NFPA 1582: Standard on Comprehensive Occupational Medical Program for Fire Departments, latest edition adopted
NFPA 1670: Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents, latest edition adopted
National Search and Rescue Committee (NSARC), Catastrophic Incident Search and Rescue (CISAR) Addendum to the National Search and Rescue Supplement to the International Aeronautical and Maritime Search and Rescue Manual, latest edition adopted
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Immunization Recommendations for Disaster Responders, United States, latest edition adopted