Ice Rescue Trainer in Estes Park, Colorado – February 3-5, 2022

Ice Rescue Trainer class includes Ice Rescue Training so that any public safety affiliated person passing the course becomes a trainer for their own department.

Ice Rescue Trainer is Dive Rescue International’s renowned three day (24+ hour) training program for first
responders. The Ice Rescue program prepares first responders from all public safety disciplines how to
respond and carry out surface ice rescues. This class introduces students to the topics of ice hazards and
formation, equipment selection, medical considerations, and the application of proven rescue methods
and techniques. Successful completion of this program is measured in class participation, passing a final
written exam and completing surface and in-water skills.
Key training topics and the associated objectives include:
• List and describe the five basic steps of the ice rescue process
• Define and explain what a scene evaluation should include
• Identify and demonstrate how to determine a victim’s condition
• Define how to assess personnel and equipment
• Describe how to develop an operational plan

• Identify the steps of ice formation
• Define the terms vertical circulation and isothermal in terms of ice formation
, Ice Rescue Trainer in Estes Park, Colorado – February 3-5, 2022

• Identify and describe at least six different types of ice and special ice formations
• Identify and describe at least five different contributing factors in determining ice strength
• Identify at least three warning signs of potentially weakened ice
• Describe ice strength guidelines and the Maximum Load Table
• Discuss the three overall goals when evaluating a victim’s condition
• Define hypothermia and describe various causes and types
• Identify the three stages of hypothermia and describe, according to the student’s medical level of
training, the proper treatment
• Identify the proper way to handle a hypothermic patient and the steps that need to be taken to
prevent further heat loss once the, Ice Rescue Trainer in Estes Park, Colorado – February 3-5, 2022 victim is rescued
• Define the following terms: drowning, near-drowning, mammalian diving reflex, and “golden hour”
• Describe, according to the student’s medical level of training, the proper treatment for a drowning
• List and explain the seven contributing factors affecting survivability
• Identify at least three components that should be considered when developing a response plan
• Identify at least three other agencies that should be contacted when responding to an ice rescue
• Identify the types of exposure protection and personal flotation devices used in an ice rescue
situation and describe when they should be used and the strengths and limitations of each piece of
• List at least three items included in each of the following equipment categories: personal equipment,
team equipment, reach devices, throw devices, and miscellaneous ice rescue support equipment


• Define the SANE approach to ice rescue
• Define and demonstrate how to conduct a Risk/Benefit Analysis and how this analysis is part of
an ongoing evaluation of the rescue process
• Identify the two types of self-rescue techniques
• Describe the duties of the on-scene rescue coordinator
• List and define the four different categories of operational plans
• Identify at least two different techniques used in the “Go” operational plan
• Identify and describe the use of different types of boat rescues
• Identify and describe two uses of watercraft in an ice rescue situation
• Utilize ice rescue techniques in different field scenarios at an ice site
• Demonstrate proper patient assessment, rescue technique, and patient care given the presenting
• Triage patients and execute the proper techniques given a multi-patient scenario
• Students will demonstrate proficiency at planning and executing at a minimum the following
rescue techniques:
Reach techniques
Throw techniques
Go techniques to include: Go with Rescue Sling, Go with Ice Rescue Board
• Problems commonly encountered will be introduced after the student gains proficiency in the
fundamental skills to simulate realistic challenges. These problems may include: equipment
failure, ice condition changes, patient decomposition mid-rescue, and new information being
introduced mid-rescue such as learning that the patient sustained a C-Spine injury which needs
to be mitigated along with the rescue from the environment.
All students must be a member of a public safety agency and at least 18
years of age. This program is designed for personnel who are physically
fit. Participants are encouraged to participate after successfully
completing the IADRS Watermanship Test or testing to a fitness level
of 13 MET (Metabolic Equivalents) or greater. Participants with aerobic
fitness questions or concerns should consult their physician prior to inwater
All students will need a U.S. Coast Guard approved Personal Flotation
Device (PFD) with a knife and whistle, adequate clothing for working
outside, and pen and paper for taking notes. If the student has access
to a cold water rescue suit or dry suit, they should bring it to class. It is
advised that students bring a dry set of clothing.


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