Course Overview

The Swiftwater Rescue workshop teaches recognition and avoidance of common river hazards, execution of self-rescue techniques, and rescue techniques for paddlers in distress. Emphasis is placed both on personal safety and on simple, commonly used skills. Techniques for dealing with hazards that carry greater risks for both victim and rescuer, such as strainers, rescue vest applications, entrapments, and pins, also are practiced. Scenarios will provide an opportunity for participants to practice their skills both individually and within a team/group context.

Minimum personal equipment for class: PFD designed for whitewater use, whitewater helmet, protective clothing suitable for extended swimming in cold water, protective footwear, boat, paddle, whistle, throw rope, 15+ feet of one inch tubular nylon webbing, 2 locking carabiners, and 2 prusik loops.

NOTE: The CCA brings a gear bag with lots of extra prusik cords and climbing webbing for knot tying practice.

This is a two-day class to be taught on rivers up to class II rapids.

ACA Official Curriculum: Level 4: Swiftwater Rescue

Introduction, Expectations, & Logistics

Rescue Philosophy
 

The Paddling Environment

Personal Preparation

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Scene Management Rescue Vest
Medical Issues
Equipment
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 


 

Throw Ropes Line Ferries and Line Crossings
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Knots Mechanical Advantage
 
Anchors  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Pins Stabilization, snag, and cinch lines
Entrapment
 
 
 
 
 

Hazards and Hydrology Strainers
Wading
Swimming (60 minutes)

Boat-based rescue

 
 
 
 

 

"Live Bait" Rescues Contact Rescues and C-spine control

V-lowers

 
   

 

Scenarios Resources
Conclusion & Wrap Up
The Final Exam