BELOIT, Wis. (WIFR) - The city of Beloit Fire Department is stepping up efforts to prepare for water rescues. The department is going through training and now has an extensive selection of equipment to use in emergencies.
The department is now training for water rescues six times each year. Crews have water ice rescue survival suits, a jet ski designed for water rescues and other emergency kits.
Lieutenant Jason Giffin says a past incident involving kids who needed to be rescued at Turtle Creek proved the importance of being prepared for water emergencies.
"We got on scene and this was over our head. We found that there was a deficiency in our department at that time; we weren't really trained for that stuff. There's a lot of departments that just get their validation training or their certification and then they kind of put it off to the side. Well, we felt that doing that wasn't going to be good enough," says Giffin.
Since starting training, the city of Beloit Fire Department has provided help in Burlington during flooding this past summer and was on standby to travel to Texas for Hurricane Harvey relief.