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News Story
Updated: 03/14/2018 08:30:01AM

Fire department aims for 1-minute water rescues with new equipment

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SUN PHOTO BY ANNE EASKER
John Studenwalt, Lt. Derrick Stewart, Jerod Jones and Anthony Laurenti wear the fire department's new Rapid Diver technology.

SUN PHOTO BY ANNE EASKER

Lt. Derrick Stewart oversees members of the Punta Gorda Fire Department as they try out the new Rapid Diver equipment.

By ANNE EASKER

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Equipped with new Rapid Diver technology, the Punta Gorda Fire Department hopes to lower its water rescue response time to just one minute. The fire department is one of the few in the area that certifies all its members for dive rescues, aside from a few who cannot dive due to medical reasons.

“Punta Gorda is not only surrounded by water, but we have miles and miles of canals,” said Lt. Derrick Stewart.

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