Water Rescue Team

Rapid City/Pennington County Water Rescue Team (WRT)

<< Law Enforcement Division Home

The Rapid City/Pennington County Water Rescue Team (WRT) has been a combined effort of the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office, the Rapid City Police Department, and the Rapid City Fire Department since 1987. The team provides services to Rapid City, Pennington County and the surrounding area.

The WRT can respond to a variety of calls, including:

  • Dive rescue and recovery
  • Surface rescue and recovery
  • Swift water rescue and recovery
  • Ice rescue and recovery
  • Evidence recovery and underwater crime scene investigation

As the largest water rescue team in the region, the WRT is classified as a Type III response team and is currently undergoing training to enhance their capabilities to a Type II response team.

The team can be called to a myriad of water related calls and the members perform their duties in trying and hazardous conditions that include black water diving, ice diving, night time operations, and exposure to extreme temperatures. The team is available 24 hours a day.

With the area’s growing population and increased interest in water sports, as well as a continuing threat of flooding from Rapid Creek and the surrounding area, the WRT is an essential part of the public safety efforts provided by the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office. Over the past several years, the WRT has responded to dozens of water related calls for service including drowning rescue and recovery, evidence recovery, and swift water rescues and recovery.