SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. –
An interview about water rescue training on Saturday afternoon turned into an actual water rescue. This is why Spokane Valley Fire Rescue crews train every single Saturday for water rescues. This woman is the person we rescued earlier today when we approached her in the knee-deep water she wasn’t wearing her life jacket; the life jacket had been strapped on the back of her kayak.
Spokane Valley Firefighter Rick Freier says it can become a life or death situation if someone is not wearing a life jacket “This is how serious the Spokane Valley Fire Department takes this. We have a dedicated team, and they train every single Saturday, and they come up with different scenarios,” Said Spokane Valley firefighter Rick Freier.
Rescue crews sometimes practice using their own men and woman rescuing them from the river. They also visit other areas where they have saved people in the past. They train to make sure that everyone is prepared and know where some of the dangerous spots are when in a rescue situation “This river is a very dangerous thing, and as an organization we take it extremely serious, and they constantly mix up their training, constantly investing money in equipment because it’s so dangerous,” added Freier
While Rick and I were watching people get into the Spokane River, We saw just how fast a fun time one the river could become a terrifying situation in a matter of seconds.
“We were standing up there and commenting how she didn’t have a life vest on. And just watching her get in I knew she was not very experienced with a kayak. So my heart started beating a little faster and when she went over it was nice to see her head pop up, but it did take her a couple of seconds, and then, of course, we wanted to go down and make sure she’s alright. so it can happen that fast you know?” explained Freier
The good news is the woman is okay and put her life jacket on after we rescued her, but the lesson here is wear your life jacket. In Spokane County, you can face a $76.00 fine from the Sheriff’s Department if caught without wearing a life jacket.