Fire crews undergo water rescue training with U.S. Navy at Lake Tahoe

Published: Jun. 6, 2023 at 3:01 PM PDT
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TAHOE CITY, Calif. (KOLO) - Crews with the North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District had the chance to learn water rescue techniques from the U.S. Navy on Tuesday, with both agencies coming together to train and discuss tactics near Tahoe City.

“Utilizing our swimmers as survivors so they can practice removing swimmers from the lake if they are in distress,” Lt. James Eckles explained.

The Navy says their helicopters generally won’t be around for rescues at Lake Tahoe, but they were able to use the lake as a training ground for the open ocean rescues they are more accustomed to making.

Jake Fonken of North Lake Tahoe Fire says water rescues are quite common at the lake.

“Sometimes weekly in the summertime,” he explained. “It varies. But we have a multitude of rescues every season.”

Both agencies say they hope this training will help them be ready for whatever a busy summer may bring, because a busy summer is expected.