“Swift water, you got no chance:” MFD’s Dive Rescue Team trains for scenarios like those in Texas

MILWAUKEE -- As first responders in Texas rescue Tropical Storm Harvey victims from rising waters, members of the Milwaukee Fire Department's Dive Rescue Team are viewing the images coming out of the Lone Star state with a trained eye.

Milwaukee Fire Department's Dive Rescue Team

"Moving water is so much more dangerous than standing water," said Lt. Kyle Kolosovsky of the Milwaukee Fire Department. "There is just only so many people that are available to help -- and thousands of people in need of that help. So what they are doing is prioritizing."

Lt. Kolosovsky said Monday, August 28th he hopes to never encounter that level of devastation. But MFD's Dive Rescue Team prepares for all types of flooding.

"50 members and annual training several times a year," Kolosovsky said.

Milwaukee Fire Department's Dive Rescue Team

A Milwaukee Fire Department fire house is staffed with Dive Rescue Team members ready to respond 24/7. They have inflatable boats and rafts, and even jet skis -- depending on the scenario.

"As little as six inches of moving water, if it is moving fast enough, is enough to knock you off your feet," Kolosovsky said.

Milwaukee Fire Department's Dive Rescue Team

Drowning is obviously the biggest concern.

Milwaukee Fire Department's Dive Rescue Team

"You get that mindset in a river -- 'I can swim,'" Kolosovsky said. "I don't care if you're Michael Phelps. In swift water, you got no chance."

When Hurricane Katrina happened, a few dozen Milwaukee firefighters actually took time off from work and went down south to help with the relief efforts. It is very possible that individual firefighters would do the same thing this time -- and head down to Texas.

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