Fire crews seeing rise in water rescues

HUBER HEIGHTS, Ohio (WDTN) – Fifteen people saved over the course of six water rescues.

The year is only half complete.

“This is not a normal year for us,” said Chief Mark Ashworth with the Huber Heights Fire Department.

Water rescue teams were called to another scene Saturday to save two women trapped in Mad River. That is following the massive flash flooding that trapped drivers in Clark County and on I-70.

“Any time we have a high risk-low frequency type of event such as a water rescue, that usually pulls one station completely out of service and then also relies on resources from a neighboring department,” said Ashworth. “And they’re pulling the same amount of people.”

Ashworth said the department has been fortunate it has not created overtime problems.

It is not just the personnel going out into the water. The gear and the boats are taking a beating with the increase in calls.

More than $75,000 sits on a trailer used to haul two rescue boats.

“Any time we do something of this nature, it can have an impact adversely to the budget,” said Ashworth. “But we keep a close eye on that.”

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