Swift water
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Swift Water. Swiftwater. One of the most dynamic and dangerous areas of Special Operations Difficult to train for the real thing Our goal Knowledge Skills Come home safe. Rescue Philosophy. We Will Do Our Best to Save Savable Lives Remember We Did Not Put That Person at Risk

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Swift water

Swift Water


Swiftwater

Swiftwater

  • One of the most dynamic and dangerous areas of Special Operations

  • Difficult to train for the real thing

  • Our goal

    • Knowledge

    • Skills

    • Come home safe


Rescue philosophy

Rescue Philosophy

  • We Will Do Our Best to Save Savable Lives

  • Remember We Did Not Put That Person at Risk

  • We Owe It to Ourselves and Our Families to Come Home Safe


Rule of three

Rule Of Three

1 Self Rescue First

2 Teammate Second

3 Victim Third


Swift water

Hydrology


Swift water

Friend or…


Swift water

Or FOE !!!


Hydrology

Hydrology

  • WATER MOVING DOWN A GRADIENT

  • RESPONDS TO THE CONFIGURATION OF THE STREAM CHANNEL IN PREDICTABLE WAYS


Swift water1

Swift Water

  • Rivers

  • Creeks

  • Washes

  • Flood Control Channels


Slow water

Slow water

  • Most Canals


Still water

Still Water

  • Lakes

  • Ponds

  • Retention Basins


Characteristics of swiftwater

Characteristics of Swiftwater

  • Powerful

  • Relentless

  • Predictable


Powerful

62

Powerful

  • Water Weights 62 Pounds Per Cubic Foot

  • That Mass Obeys the Laws of Physics

  • Moving Water Has Tremendous Energy


Relentless

Relentless

  • Unlike the Surf, the Force of Swift Water Does Not Let up

  • We Have Very Little Control Over the River

  • If You Are Trapped or Pinned You Have a Very Poor Chance of Survival


Predictable

Predictable

  • A Knowledgeable Rescuer Will Be Able to Read the River and Predict With Certainty Where Both Safety and Danger Lie


Force mass x velocity squared

FORCE = mass X VELOCITY SQUARED!!!


Swift water

FORCE ~ VELOCITY

VELOCITY POUNDSPOUNDS

FT/S M.P.H ON LEGSON BODY

5ft/S=3.4 M.P.H 16.8 33.6

10ft/S=6.8 M.P.H.67.2 134

20ft/S=13.6 M.P.H.269 538

Rule of thumb: Stay out of current over your knees


Determine velocity

Determine Velocity

100 FT

MEASURE THE TIME IT TAKES AN OBJECT TO FLOAT 100 FT

Note: with a 10mph current an object will travel one mile in six minutes


Velocity influenced by

Velocity influenced By…

  • Gradient (steepness)

  • Friction

  • Volume (CFS)

  • Channel Configuration

    bends

    constrictions

    obstructions


Swift water

Bank Erosion


Volume cfs

Volume - CFS

DXWXV=CFS

5 FT/SEC

5

100

2500 CFS


Flash flood

Flash Flood


River terminology

L

R

River Terminology

  • Our reference point will always be facing down river

    • River Left or River Right

    • Up River or Down River


Laminar flow

Laminar Flow

FASTEST

SLOWEST


Helical flow

Helical Flow


River features

River Features

  • Down Stream V

  • Eddy

  • Eddy Line

  • Hydraulic

  • Up Stream V

  • Standing Waves

  • Bends


Swift water

AKA “The Tongue”

usually indicates the main channel, deepest water


Eddy a horizontal reversal of current

Eddy – a horizontal Reversal of current


Eddy s

Eddy's


Eddy line

Eddy Line


Hydraulic a vertical reversal of water

Hydraulic – a vertical reversal of water


Hydraulic

Hydraulic


Up stream v

Up Stream V

Usually indicates the presence of an obstruction


Standing waves

Standing Waves


How standing waves are formed

How Standing waves are formed


Hazards

Low Head Dams

Strainers

Trees & Logs

Fences

Vehicles

Bends

Undercut Rocks

Foot Entrapment

Stationary Objects

Panicked Swimmer

Hypothermia

Debris / Loads

Hazards


Low head dams

Low Head Dams


Escape route

Escape Route


Strainers

Strainers

  • The Most Dangerous Hazard on the River

  • Anything That Water Flows Through but a Person Wont

  • Avoid It or Climb Over It or You Will Drown


Climb over strainers

Climb over Strainers


Foot entrapment

Foot Entrapment


Undercut rocks

Undercut Rocks


Stationary objects

Stationary Objects


Bridge abutments

Bridge abutments

Unlike natural rocks, which usually cause an upstream pillow, bridge abutments offer little hydraulic cushion, making pinning more likely


Flood debris

FloodDebris


Loads

Loads

  • Top Loads – things that float

  • Suspended load – heavy objects that can’t float but move with the current; more dangerous because they can’t be seen

  • Bottom Loads – stationary and non-stationary objects on bottom; can cause foot entrapment


Vehicle behavior

Vehicle Behavior


Hypothermia

Hypothermia

Rescuer With No Thermal Protection

Temperature Useful Work Unconscious

40 degrees7.5 minutes 30 minutes

50 degrees15 minutes 60 minutes

60 degrees30 minutes 120 minutes


Panicking victim

Panicking Victim

  • Several rescuers die every year because they did not recognize the signs of panic and made contact with the victim, only to be overpowered by the panicky victim.

  • Never allow a victim that is in a state of panic make contact with you.


Arizona watersheds

Arizona Watersheds


Pre planning

Pre-Planning

  • RECOGNIZE Hazards

  • Take steps to PREVENT

  • PREPARE for Rescue


Personal equipment

Personal Equipment

  • PFD Personal Flotation Device

  • Helmet, Water Rescue

  • River Shoes

  • Whistle

  • Knife

  • Thermal Protection

  • Strobe or chemical light


Typical scenarios

Typical Scenarios

  • Vehicle Swept Off Roadway

  • Vehicle In A Canal

  • Person In The Water

  • Person Stranded On Mid-stream Object


Swift water

“What stupid people see”


Swift water

“What evil lurks in the dark”


Rescue objectives

Rescue Objectives

  • Locate

  • Contact

  • Assess

  • Stabilize

  • Prepare for extrication

  • Extricate

  • Transport to medical facility


Effecting a rescue

Effecting a Rescue

Low Risk To High Risk

  • REACH

  • THROW

  • ROW

  • GO

  • HELO


Reach

Reach

  • Extending an Object From the Shore to a Person in the Water

    • Paddle

    • Ladder

    • Pike Pole

    • Inflated Fire Hose

  • Do Not Get Pulled in


Reach1

Reach


Fire hose pendulum

Fire HosePendulum


Throw

Throw

  • ROPE – pendulum belay

    stabilization line

    snag line

  • Floatation – PFD

    rescue ring

    inflated fire hose


Throw bag

Throw Bag

  • Approximately 50 Foot Effective Range

  • Victim Must Be Physically and Mentally Capable of Grabbing and Hanging Onto Line

  • Line Must Land “at” or “up River” From the Victim


Pendulum belay

PendulumBelay


2 nd person assists swimmer to shore

2ND PersonAssistsswimmerto shore


Receiver position

ReceiverPosition


Proper ferry angle

ProperFerryAngle


Stabilization line allows victim to maintain head above water

Stabilization LineAllows victim to maintain head above water


Snag line a line which is used to pull victim free from entrapment

Snag LineA line which is used to pull victim free from entrapment


Stabilization snag line requires quick deployment and people on both sides of river

Stabilization/Snag LineRequires quick deployment and people on both sides of river


Swift water

Row

  • Boat Options – raft

  • Boat Techniques/operations –

    Row or paddle

    Highline

    2 or 4 point tether


Row boat operations

Row (boat operations)

  • Boats Provide a Safe Platform for Rescuers to Go to the Victim

  • Can Be Controlled From Shore With Tether Lines

  • Can Be Used to Access Hazard Areas of the River

  • Can be used to search waterways


Go warning high risk

GO WARNING – HIGH RISK !

  • Tension diagonal crossing (zip-line)

  • Rescue TFD – “live bait” rescue

    “V” - lower

  • Shallow water crossing

  • Strong swimmer/contact rescue

    Caution: Rescuers can be swept away


Tethered swimmer

TetheredSwimmer


Shallow water crossing

ShallowWaterCrossing


Crossing to vehicle

Crossing to Vehicle


Tension diagonal crossing

Tension Diagonal Crossing


Helicopter

Helicopter

  • Fast Access to Difficult to Reach Locations

  • High Potential for Significant Life Loss

  • Highest risk options


Rescue organization

Rescue Organization

  • Centralized command

  • Assign divisions and groups

  • Develop a plan

  • Have a back-up plan

  • No free lancing


Divisions groups

Divisions/Groups

  • Extrication (Technical Rescue)

  • Upstream

  • Downstream

  • River Right & Left

  • Resource

  • Treatment

  • Transportation


Signals

Signals


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