After four years of planning and fund raising by the host team, our Canada trip is finally a wrap!
And what a week it was!
This trip had humble beginnings in the form of a simple email asking if Northeast Public Safety Divers would travel to Alberta, Canada to teach public safety divers in the process of getting their team to the next level.
(Of course, we would).
What followed was years of planning and consulting as the all-volunteer Underwater Search Team built the foundation so we could all hit the ground running, including sending their members to some of our online courses.
As one of the only public safety dive teams in the entire province of Alberta, the Underwater Search Team covers roughly 255 thousand square miles, including some 600 lakes and rivers. Because of this distance, it isn’t uncommon for them to travel 20+ hours to a dive site and receive multiple requests a week.
This team is good and they took everything we could throw at them, even pushing 12 hour days. It can be overwhelming to be introduced to so many new things at one time, but they just took it in stride, always wanting more.
Well, “more” is something we’re all too eager to provide.
Over the course of the long weekend, we went from the classroom, to dirt dives, through gear inspections and setup options to getting below the surface at several bodies of water and working the techniques.
Each day ended with hours-long debriefing sessions (led entirely by the students) to examine what they learned and how to adopt it into their current operations.
From an instructor standpoint, it was a real pleasure watching this team get tighter as a unit while also growing as individual divers. Their passion for this craft was undeniable.
On the final day… fate decided to transform our wrap-up evolution into the real world when the call came to activate the team!
At the team’s insistence, we got right to work alongside them providing support on running the operation, laying down good sonar tracks, creating viable search zones, and eventually recovering the victim.
To say it was amazing seeing the team apply their new skills in the field on a live operation would be a major understatement. And us having the chance to provide real-time support, answer questions, give guidance, and offer ideas was unreal.
It was the capstone to an extraordinarily successful course that will never be forgotten by any of us.
Aside from the diving, this trip could not have happened without the support from the team’s significant others and spouses. At their insistence, we ate with them in their homes, sharing meals they prepared just for us. Their living rooms and backyards also provided the backdrop for many of the debriefs that really cemented the lessons learned.
As far as we’re concerned, the support this team gets from their significant others is truly the oil in their machine.
We thank you from the bottom of our collective heart for your hospitality and your commitment to the team’s continued success.
Congratulations to the Underwater Search Team and welcome to the ERDI club!
Note: The Team’s leader, Luke, left us this review.
The Underwater Search Team out of Alberta, Canada had the pleasure of hosting NEPSD for training. I cannot say enough good about them. They take the ERDI program and put it on steroids.Luke Jevne
Their passion, experience and willingness to teach is unbelievable. They are beyond professional and personable.
I cannot thank Tim, John and Eric enough for traveling across North America to give us what I believe is the best of the best training possible.
If you are a Public Safety dive team looking for training, Northeast Public Safety Diving is an absolute MUST!!!.
I sincerely miss their friendship, comraderie, passion and excitement.. Amazing job fellas.