La Crosse, Wisconsin (WXOW) ---- Whether its practicing for bluff rescues or river rescues emergency crews know there's a very good chance those skills will be put to the test often. 25 members of the La Crosse Dive Unit shared their skills by training police Reserve Officers.
Jordan Shackleton is at Riverside Park near the levy to train the Reserves. "We're gonna jump in the water and do a mock scenario of somebody who fell in upstream." 7 lives were saved last year using a simple item called a throw bag. The bags buy both the rescuers and victims more time. Kevin Kappauf is a trainer with the Dive Unit. He's also a firefighter. "It's a bunch of rope in a bag. We put about 60 feet of rope cause that's about what the average person can throw."
Adam Wholewind has been with the La Crosse Police Department's Reserves for 11 years. He says he knows throw bags work but you have to know how to use them. "It's not as easy as it looks. It's a tough skill to learn that's why we like to practice."
On average 12 hundred people visit the park after hours and everyone is told to leave. La Crosse Police say the park is closed at that time of night for a reason.
Sgt. Randy Rank says the timing for the training couldn't be more perfect. "All 3 schools are back in session again. We're gearing up for Oktoberfest.
The La Crosse Dive Unit is looking for new members. For more information send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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