Four team members attend a GMFRS Swiftwater First Responder Theory Session at GMFRS Bolton Central Fire Station

In November 2011, four Bolton MRT team members attended the Rescue 3 Swiftwater First Responder practical session generously offered to the team by Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, alongside Firefighters from GMFRS. (Please refer to website reports of 16th and 17th November 2011).

This morning, three of the four members who attended the practical session, plus one other team member, were delighted to be invited to attend the theory session of the Rescue 3 Swiftwater First Responder. Both sessions are required to reach certification as Swiftwater First Repsonder.

John Fletcher, Equipment Officer – Water, (who had not attended the November 2011 practical course as he is already a certified water technician), Nick Berry, Equipment Officer – Ropes and Stretchers, Steve O’Hara, Full Team Call-Out Member, and Elaine Gilliland, Training Officer, attended Bolton Central Fire Station and were welcomed by Austin Lewis, GMFRS Water and Animal Rescue Instructor.

Initially expecting to undertake the theory session along with the Firefighters that had attended the practical sessions in Llangollan, North Wales, alongside the team members, all were surprised to have Austin’s undivided attention and instruction as the firefighters were unable to attend.

What an exceptional opportunity for all team members to have in-depth discussions regarding all areas of both sessions. The training involved presentations, video clips and discussions around the following areas:

  • Rescue Philosophy
  • Rescue Priorities
  • Rescue Options
  • The ’14 Absolutes’ of Flood and Swiftwater Rescue
  • Moving Water
  • Swiftwater Hydrology
  • Swiftwater Features
  • Swiftwater Hydraulics

Once again, Bolton Mountain Rescue Team are very grateful for the fantastic opportunities Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service have provided through this training and John, Nick, Steve and Elaine would like to especially thank Austin for the focused and very supportive instruction that was provided both in Llangollan previously and at the session today.