POTTER COUNTY, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Officer from Potter County Sheriff’s Office underwent special training Tuesday, practicing search and rescue scenarios on the Canadian River.
Lt. Dustin Langwell of the Potter County Sheriff’s Office said they brought 20 officers from three teams together for training. That includes command trailers, drones, and river rescue teams.
“Just practicing in case anyone gets lost here or someone gets hurt,” said Lt. Langwell. “We’re just trying to get them out of the river safely.”
lt. Langwell said the team wanted to be ready to respond to the best of their ability.
“Once we get a large group of people here, we want to be there only to know that we are here to help, to be here for the public,” he continued. “And if something bad happens, we can be at the top of our game and get people out of here safely.”
Sergeant Wallace Jones said they got a lot of calls to the river in the summer.
“People get out of here and they tend to go too far and their Jeep or vehicle they’re in can’t afford to go as far as they did east or west and they get stuck,” said the Sergeant. Jones. “And then it’s our job to find them, make sure they’re safe.”
According to Sergeant. Jones, this exercise is great for honing their skills and getting used to working as a team.
“We take a drone team and look for the person then the SAR team will use a four-wheeled vehicle, Argo, or side by side,” said the Sergeant. said jones. “And once the drone team finds them, then they take another team to get the subject, or if it’s someone that needs to be caught or something, we’ll do that.”
According to Sergeant. Jones, their team will rescue people in need but will not tow their vehicles out. He says they can call a tow truck if necessary.
“If you want to leave here, always come together, at least two vehicles, so that if one gets stuck, there is a place to get out with the other or pull the other out,” he said. “Don’t come down here alone. Make sure that you are two or three people in the vehicle as well as in a group of two to be safe.”
lt. Langwell said when they were called they responded with Potter County Fire Rescue.
“Make sure to wear your helmet,” said Lt. Langwell. “Having a good phone that has good service just in case if you get hurt you can call for help. And bring us here if necessary.”
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