The Underwater Search and Recovery Team (USRT) is comprised of highly trained divers. Divers specializations include dive medics, underwater bomb technicians, dive supervisors, underwater death investigators, and crime scene management.
The Underwater Search and Recovery Team consists of one dive Sergeant and seven constables. All officers have extensive training and are qualified commercial divers. The minimum requirements to join this police team are to possess a dive certificate and completed a minimum of 20 dives with 10 hours of bottom time. Divers must also possess a high level of fitness and pass an extensive medical examination. Police Divers perform the duties of a Marine Unit officer and have a second function as a diver.
All dive team members are qualified in scuba and surface supply diving. The team trains 40 hours each month and works closely with other Ontario police dive teams. Police divers are able to conduct dive operations in any body of water to a maximum depth of 100 feet. Lakes, ponds, rivers and sewers are common areas of dive team operations.
Once fully trained and operational as a police diver, officers can specialize in crime scene management or as dive medics, underwater bomb technicians, underwater death investigators, and dive supervisors. The dive team is fully equipped with underwater video and digital camera capabilities for any police investigation.
Search & Recovery
The dive team can assist with any water-related investigations, such as the recovery of bodies, firearms, weapons, vehicles, vessels, aircraft or criminal evidence.
Remote Operated Vehicle
A number of Marine Unit officers are trained to use a Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV). An ROV is a controllable, tethered underwater robot that can be operated by land or on board a vessel. An ROV can send and receive data signals with a computer and is equipped with sonar, a colour video camera and a manipulating arm. It can reach depths of up to 500 feet.
For safety, an ROV can survey for hazards on the bottom of a lake before sending a diver down to the area. Using the camera, an ROV can survey a boat’s hull for damages or objects attached to the hull for criminal activities, such as narcotics. The manipulating arm can retrieve objects from the bottom of lake, which can assist with searches and evidence recovery.
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