South Dakota Taskforce 1 brushes up on skills in Rapid City

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South Dakota Taskforce 1 assembled in Rapid City this week, all to brush up on their skills.

Lt. Jim Bussell, Rapid City Fire Department, says, "The scenario is that a vehicle has plunged from either a cliff, or an elevation and the only way to access the vehicle and extricate the patient is to do that vertically, come from above."

South Dakota Taskforce 1 is a team made up of members from fire departments from Aberdeen, Watertown, Sioux Falls and Rapid City.
Which is why training as a team is critical to their performance during a real emergency.

Bussell says, "You know, we are all in different corners of the state, we don't get a regular opportunity to train together, so it's very important for Taskforce 1 to get together and train. The incidents that they're going to respond to are what we call high risk, low frequency events. They're events that don't happen very often, but they pose a high deal of risk to the public and to the responders as well."

And there's a reason why they train during rally week.

Bussell says, "You have Taskforce 1, essentially assembled here in Rapid City and if something happens during the Sturgis Rally that may require Taskforce 1's assistance, they're already assembled here and ready to go."

In fact, while Taskforce 1 was here, they were called to help recover a body at Hippie Hole.
Which is why it's important for them to train as often as possible.
And South Dakota Taskforce 1 doesn't just respond to rescue missions, they also respond to chemical, biological, and explosive threats.