Brewster Fire Department Responds to Dive Rescue in Yarmouth

On Wednesday March 5, 2015 at approximately 3:15 a.m. the Brewster Fire Department was dispatched to Colonial Beach in Yarmouth as a member of the Barnstable County Dive Rescue Team to assist with a search for a missing person. Car 230 and the dive team trailer with two firefighters and Car 231 (Chief Moran) responded on the request. Upon arrival units found the Yarmouth fire department divers completing a preliminary underwater search at the last known location of the missing person. With dangerous currents, darkness, and poor weather conditions hampering the dive team members from conducting a full underwater search of the area a Coast Guard helicopter was requested to respond and conduct an air search using their high powered lighting and infra-red camera equipment. Shortly after arriving on scene the helicopter located a body approximately 600’ off of the beach. Under severe weather conditions and rotor wash from the helicopter Yarmouth Fire and Barnstable County Dive Team members immediately donned cold water ice suits and using an ice sled and safety ropes rapidly moved out to the victim. Other team members donned dive gear and stood by in the event entry into the frigid waters became necessary. Upon reaching the victim members rapidly assessed the situation and verified the operation was now a recovery of a confirmed fatality. Firefighters on shore then initiated an operation to return rescue personnel to shore. Once on the beach fire department personnel turned the body over to the Yarmouth and State Police for further investigation. During the operation Brewster firefighters assisted with logistical support and rope tenders and Chief Moran was assigned as the Liaison for the Dive Operations Chief. All Brewster units returned to fire headquarters at approximately 7:45 a.m.