Open-Water Search And Rescue Drill - PHOTOS - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Open-Water Search And Rescue Drill - PHOTOS

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High in the sky, anything could go wrong. And pilots from the Marine Corps Air Station need to be prepared. That's why they were out in Broad River practicing rescue drills.

"A good portion of our training is over the ocean, so this is actually really good training for us, in case something does go wrong," said Capt. Ben Van Wingading. 

"Put into practice, kind of their worst day, because really they do emergency procedures for the jets all the time, but in actuality being in the water, and somebody's ejected, they do this training every four years in an environmentally controlled pool," said Lt. Kevin Brighton. 

But out in the open water is much different than inside.

"OK, real world emergency guys, the swimmers will come in and no other boats are going to be coming in the water. Don't everybody try to jump in the water and save them, just the rescue squad will be going in," said Mark Cobb, Beaufort County Sheriff's Office. 

After a briefing, the pilots got suited up and out into the water alongside the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office and the Department of Natural Resources.

After the drill was complete--officials gave us their feedback saying the drill seemed to be a success......

"The guys in the water have a new appreciation for their worst day, and hopefully they can pass that energy on to the rest of the air crew, and hey, this isn't as easy as we make it out to be," said Brighton. 


It's like something out of a movie: Pilots having to eject out of a damaged plane and landing in open water. Its not a movie, it was the scene of a drill in Beaufort Tuesday, as pilots from the Marine Corps Air Station had the chance to practice what they need to do in the event it happens to them.

The Coast Guard, Beaufort County Sheriff's Office dive team, and the Department of Natural Resources assisted in a "stranded pilot" drill. The exercise consisted of two sets of pilots being dropped and rescued in the he Broad River. Officials say this kind of training only happens once every four years, and it is an excellent way for pilots to get hands-on experience.

Lowcountry reporter Brittany Shane was out there with the rescue teams and will have more on the training tonight on NEWS 3 at 6pm.

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