Specialized Rescue Services
The Snyder Fire Department has several specialized rescue capabilities. Most often needed is vehicle extrication, using the hydraulic rescue tool most commonly known as the "Jaws of Life" although that is a registered trademark of the Hurst company. Other specialized rescue needs include High-Angle rescue, Low-Angle and Confined Space, Wind Turbine rescue, and Swiftwater rescue. Rescue-One, a heavy rescue truck, is the primary piece of apparatus for routine rescue calls.
The Snyder Fire Department utilizes several powerful hydraulic rescue tools to remove pieces of vehicles from around accident victims involved in motor vehicle crashes. These include spreaders, cutters, rams and specialized pieces of equipment. The Department responds routinely to all vehicle accidents with reported injuries for several reasons. Firefighters disconnect active air bags, provide fluid spill control, traffic control and attempt to render the scene safe for EMS personnel to perform their duties. Should the occupant(s) be trapped, the Fire Department is responsible for necessary action using various tools to resolve the situation, and allow EMS personnel to safely remove the victims.
High Angle Rescue
Ropes, harnesses, and considerable associated hardware and equipment are occasionally necessary for various rescue scenes ranging from industrial to vehicular. Firefighters are trained in rope rescue, where persons are raised or lowered during the rescue process. Training is obtained locally by certified rescue instructors, as well as at Texas A & M university during scheduled firefighter training. The Snyder Fire Rescue Team has often been the agency responsible for teaching in many of the area fire and rescue schools.
Low Angle and Confined Space
The oil field industry as well as the wind turbine industry require a constant state of readiness for confined space rescue. Often, these rescues involve toxic or oxygen depleted environments, and require rescue efforts to include rescue under breathing air. Rescue-One, the department's heavy rescue truck has cascaded breathing air systems, explosion proof equipment, and numerous pieces of technical rescue equipment. Again, training is in-house primarily, by persons certified and qualified to teach rescue procedures.
Wind Turbine Rescue
Literally thousands of wind turbines have been constructed in Scurry and surrounding counties in recent years. The Snyder Fire Department has teamed up with the Sweetwater Fire Department to provide a regional rescue capability. Both departments have worked diligently to secure very specialized equipment dedicated solely to wind turbine rescue. With most of these structures exceeding 250' or more, the department has outfitted a wind turbine rescue trailer, with necessary equipment for this very technical type of rescue.
Although rare, several requests for swiftwater rescue have been answered by the department in recent years. This is primarily during periods of flash flooding where vehicles are swept off of streets and the occupants are trapped surrounded by rushing water. A trailer with limited swiftwater equipment is maintained, and fire department personnel have some limited swiftwater rescue capabilities.