St. Croix EMS. is located in the beautiful St. Croix River valley in Hudson Wisconsin. The river valley has seen it share of tragedy.
The team was established due in part because in the past EMS personnel were forced to call dive teams in from Minnesota to assist us in recovering victims. It’s extremely frustrating for EMT’s to stand on a beach waiting for the help to arrive so we felt it was time to establish a team. The river in the summer time is extremely busy. On the weekends thousands of boats will travel between Redwing, Hudson, and Stillwater enjoying the scenery. Every year we see an increase in accidents on the river the most serious lately involved two boats, which collided causing the death of six people. Of course alcohol was involved in that incident.
After nearly three years of planning St. Croix EMS & Rescue formed the Dive Rescue Team with the support of Team Leader Glen Hartman, Dr. Terry Nooner and Ret. Trooper Paul Weyek. With the support of the local United Way and The Stillwater Fire Department dive team, enough equipment was purchased to initiate the training.
In the summer of 2000, the first seven members were trained as scuba divers. In the year to follow most of the members became not only advanced scuba divers but achieved the certification of Ice Rescue, Search and Recovery and Rescue Diver. Today, we have nearly 12 members, a dive rescue truck and trailer and an inflatable Zodiac and a 22′ Boston Whaler Dive boat.
The team members are committed to continue their trainings to include underwater crime scene processing, collapse structure diving and other technical dive operations. A majority of our team certified in numerous public safety dive trainings through Dive Rescue International and Emergency Response Diving International. We also are proud to have several members certified to Divemaster level with PADI and a PADI instructor on staff. Our staff are members of the International Association of Dive Rescue Specialists, the largerst public safety dive association in North America.