Summer’s coming: Point Pleasant Rescue Dive Team conducts surf, inlet drills

     Members of the Point Pleasant First Aid and Emergency Squad Rescue Dive Team help a

    Members of the Point Pleasant First Aid and Emergency Squad Rescue Dive Team help a "victim" out of the ocean following a staged rescue near the Manasquan Inlet on Sunday. (Photo by Tom Conroy)

    With summer quickly approaching, a local dive team spent last Sunday training for any water emergency that may arise.

    The Point Pleasant First Aid and Emergency Squad Rescue Dive Team conducted drills near and inside the Manasquan Inlet in Point Pleasant Beach.

    A crew of rescue swimmers, along with support from first aiders, jumped into the still cold ocean to rescue “victims.”

    “It is not always easy getting in to the water,” said a posting on the team’s blog. “With waves and currents it can become difficult. With some divers acting as victim and other as rescuers the divers were in and out of the water many times. Entering water and swimming out to the victim and towing the victim back in to the beach and getting the victim out of the water and into the hands of the first aiders.”

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    After a few hours, which also included training with a back board, the crew stopped at the Manasquan Inlet to determine if there was sufficient visibility to dive.

    But the team leader had a surprise to test the crew’s skills: he planned to stage an unexpected rescue.

    “What no one knew was I had planned to have Sue jump in to the water and play the victim. She did it so well!” the blog post said. “No one saw her jump in and it was a surprise to everyone. Linda was the first to act and was in the water in seconds holding sue afloat, she was followed by OJ, Ali, Greg and Bob. The first aiders got the miller man and passed down to the divers and working as a team had Sue strapped down and ready to be lifted out of the water in minutes. Lines were tried on the board and the first aiders had Sue up and out of the water and into the ambulance in seconds.”

    The team, lead by Chet Nesley, trains year round, according to Point Pleasant First Aid and Emergency Squad Captain Jerry Meaney, who also operates the popular Barnegat Bay Island, NJ Facebook page. 

    “Our divers are very well trained in all water rescue, boat operations, and jetty rescue,” Meaney said. “The Dive Team has numerous EMTs, and they all assist with EMS calls. The team draws skilled divers from all over New Jersey and even a few from out of state.”  

    To view more photos of Sunday’s drill, click here.

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