Oct. 27—Dealing with incidents that involve bodies of water is not something any law enforcement entity looks forward to responding to, but the Lake County Sheriff's Office Dive Team is committed to be prepared for any such scenario.
On Oct 22, the dive team conducted training at White Star Quarry in Gibsonburg in Sandusky County.
According to a post on the Lake County Sheriff's Office Facebook page, this location is a popular site for scuba divers as it provides clear visibility for divers to safely dive at various depths. More often than not, divers find themselves working in waters with less than 1 foot of visibility, so the divers were motivated to train at a location with over 20 feet of visibility.
According to the post, there are several attractions at this site for divers such as training platforms, sunken boats, a school bus and confined space obstacles. Divers were able to safely dive around and inside of these vehicles to familiarize themselves with how to safely approach and work around such obstacles they may be called to respond to.
While at this location, Deputy Justin Nevison and Sergeant Michael Suschak engaged with civilian divers from across the state by participating in an underwater pumpkin carving contest to help with manual dexterity while wearing dive gear and while being underwater.
The Lake County Sheriff's Office Dive Team consists of seven divers made up from Road Patrol, Corrections and Special Deputy Divisions.
Nevison said, the dive team receives around a half dozen or more activations per year.
"Typically, distressed swimmer or distressed boater calls are first received by the United States Coast Guard and our Marine Patrol who are able to quickly respond and provide assistance without the need of the dive team," Nevison said. "Our dive team can be requested by any agency within Lake County as well as police departments and sheriff's offices outside of the county."
Divers first obtain their basic scuba diver certification. According to Nevison, from there, they continue to receive advanced training not only through additional classes, but from the leadership of the team who have over 20 years of public safety diving experience.
Throughout the year, the Lake County Sheriff's Office Dive Team trains in topics such as rescue techniques, search patterns, salvage, vehicle recovery, evidence recovery and crime scene processing to just name a few.
The divers work closely with the Marine Patrol Division as well as surrounding dive teams to prepare for a response to water-related emergencies, according to the post.