Saturday, July 11, 2009

Collaborative Mock Rescue: Madison

The Maple Bluff Fire Department set up a "mock" rescue today on Lake Mendota in collaboration with the UW Lifesaving, Madison Fire Department, Dane County Sheriff, and McFarland Fire Department. The scenerio that was set was a boat collision somewhere on Lake Mendota, and for us to respond as normal. We arrived on scene with at least 3 people in the water. We learned the they were pretending to be drunk, and that there was one person missing and presumed underneath the water. UW Rescue took the one person who had a back injury and proceeded to enter the water to put this victim on a backboard. As far as I know, in 100 years, no one has had to enter the water for an emergency like this, but it was good practice.

We had enough Lifesaving staff so that I could document by taking video and pictures with the Canon 5D Mark II with a 70-200mm lens. I would have probably not used this lens knowing that most of the video wasn't as far away as I expected. The DC Sheriff is our main contact on Lake Mendota, and they monitor our frequency while we are in service. The were able to get the 3 other victims out of the water and back to safety of Tenney where MFD ambulances were waiting, while we backboarded our victim.

Channel 15 News was also on a MFD Dingy, and somewhat comical with the horsehoe personal floatation devices. They were going to run a spot on NBC 15 at 5 10. Here is a link to the full story.

After the training session was over, all of the departments working together on this met at Burrows park for a de-briefing to talk about how we did, lessons learned, and what we could have done differently in the future.

Everyone was very complimentary of the other services, and the biggest issue was communications between the different departments.

Maple Bluff Fire Department got a new boat this year, so I made sure to get a decent shot, in front of Maple Bluff, of course.

It's amazing to me that we've all been working on these lakes for decades and haven't done a collaborative training like this before. I think that everyone learned something, and having a beautiful sunny and warm day made it enjoyable for all who participated. I hope that we do this in the future.

For more images from the training exercise, please visit m2 Photography, or click here.

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