Fort Worth

Fort Worth Firefighters Training to be on Dive Team

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Fort Worth firefighters are training to join the 60-member dive team which performs swift-water rescues during flash flooding.

The class on Tuesday was in the swimming pool at the fire training center learning how to scuba dive.

"They're out here getting certified,” said Fort Worth fire department spokesman Mike Drivdahl. “They will eventually be part of our swift water rescue team. They would be the divers being staffed right now for the severe weather."

Fort Worth has two full-time dive teams, ready to respond city-wide to a water emergency.

The department assembled a third team because of the threat of flash flooding the next few days.

Swift water rescues are often the dive team’s riskiest calls, Drivdahl said.

"Those are a little challenging because they're time-sensitive,” Drivdahl said. “There's a lot of risk involved. And firefighters really have to be up on their game for those."

The high risk is why first responders don't want drivers to ever put themselves in a situation where they might need to be rescued.

"One thing that's really important to remember is if you cannot see the road because there's water over the road. don't drive through it,” Drivdahl said. “Your life is not worth the risk. Find another way to go home, find another way to go to the store."

But the fire department says the dive team will be ready -- just in case.

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