Fred A. Mitchell Jr., Fire Chief
47 Central Street
Georgetown, MA 01833
For Immediate Release
Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018
Contact: John Guilfoil
Georgetown Fire Department Completes Ice Rescue Training
GEORGETOWN — Chief Fred Mitchell Jr. reports that the Georgetown Fire Department completed ice rescue training on Pentucket Pond.
Georgetown has two large bodies of water in town — Pentucket and Rock ponds — that draw many people this time of year for skating and ice fishing.
On Jan. 27, 18 members of the Georgetown Fire Department headed over to the frozen Pentucket Pond to refine their rescue skills in the event that they’re called upon during an emergency.
Led by Cumberland, Rhode Island Fire Capt./Paramedic Robert Shields, who is also the town’s water rescue team coordinator, Georgetown firefighters reviewed safety measures before donning special “exposure” suits that enable a responder to enter frigid waters for a rescue.
After cutting a hole in the ice, one group of firefighters entered the icy-water, while another group practiced pulling them out and bringing them onto the shore. They then switched roles to ensure everyone was fully versed in all aspects of ice rescue techniques and safety.
In addition to the suits, firefighters reviewed and trained using a variety of equipment including a special “sled” equipped with two flotation pontoons that a firefighter stands on to move about safely on thin ice. The sled also helps to move a victim off ice or water for safe transportation to the shore.
“This is invaluable training for firefighters and I want to thank Capt. Shields for coming to Georgetown to train our crew,” Chief Mitchell said. “His expertise and years of experience in the field were extremely beneficial for these exercises. I’m confident firefighters are now fully prepared in the event that we are called to respond to an incident on the ice.”