You have seen it in the movies. Someone is trapped or stranded on top of a building, on a mountainside, on an overturned boat or in the middle of nowhere. Danger is imminent. Then, just in the nick of time, a line is lowered from a helicopter to haul the person away to safety.

Next Thursday, you can see it in real life when the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office and Charlotte County Fire/EMS conduct a joint training exercise on Long Line/Short Haul rescue techniques.

The training is being provided by Lunsford Air Consulting, a company that specializes in various helicopter training. It includes both classroom and practical exercises so that everyone understands the role they need to play to be able to safely get a victim from an area that has limited access to the more advanced emergency services they need. The same type of coordination and communication is also needed when the helicopter is used for wildfire suppression in remote areas.

On Thursday September 12, beginning at about 10:30 am, CCSO pilots and CCFD/EMS personnel will be working on part of the practical exercises in the field north of the Sheriff’s Office Administration Building. CCFD/EMS will have a tent set up for media along the tree-line outside of the training area ‘hot zone.’ See the map attached.

From that vantage point you can watch as members from the two agencies practice rescuing a victim (a 175 pound mannequin) with a long line and transporting the victim to safety. You can see the coordination required between the people on the ground and the air crew to safely and effectively accomplish the rescue. Knowledgeable personnel from both agencies will be available to talk about the training, the equipment used and the plans for future utilizations.