Motorized Swiftwater Rescue Boat Operator



Motorized Swiftwater Rescue Boat Operator delivers hands-on training for rescue boat operators responding to incidents on moving water. This comprehensive course can be easily tailored to the type of watercraft being utilized including jet or propellor, and PWCs.

This course will develop the sense of confidence and necessary skills to operate watercraft at speed in fast-moving water in rivers or flood situations, and to perform rescues of casualties from a boat-based position. Participants receive a certification from Rescue 3 International that is recognized worldwide and is a valuable document in mutual aid situations.

A low student to instructor ratio makes for lots of hands-on practice time for each participant.

The course includes basic skills for self-rescue and the rescue of others, but focuses on watercraft handling, identifying hazards, man-overboard, boat-based victim rescue, and general on-water safety. 

Please note: Clients must provide their own watercraft.

Motorized Swiftwater Rescue Boat Operator Course Details


3 days


1 day classroom, 2 days on the water

(+ optional night session)


Minium 4. Maximum 6.

  • 18+ years of age
  • Basic swimming ability
  • In good physical condition
  • SRT1 Cert or SWNW Cert


Annual Training Maintenance

Click here to read about the options available for annual guided practice

Required Equipment
  • Personal flotation device (Type III or V)*
  • Water-sports helmet*

* Rental included in course fee

Takeaways & Documentation
  • Rescue 3’s Rescue Boat Operator Field Guide
  • Personalized skill sheet  signed by the instructor
  • Registration of training record in Rescue 3 International’s student database
  • Certificate of completion

Motorized Swiftwater Rescue Boat Operator Course Outline


  • Rescue 3’s Philosophy
  • Boating regulations
  • Basic hydrology (movement of water)
  • Personal and team equipment
  • Boat-based safety equipment
  • Communications
  • Introduction to ropes, knots and specialized gear
  • Rope skills including mechanical advantage
  • Boat maintenance and trouble-shooting
  • Boat inspection
  • Pre-trip safety checklist
  • Self rescue swimming skills
  • Crew roles and responsibilities
  • Trailering/Launching and loading
  • Hazard avoidance
  • Eddying in & out, ferrying, running rapids etc.
  • Maneuvering with the engine cut
  • Swamping, capsizing
  • Flipping and righting
  • Wraps and pins
  • Coming along side another vessel
  • Person overboard or subject pick up techniques
  • Techniques for getting an incapacitated subject into the vessel
  • Towing techniques
  • Boat rigging strategies
  • Boat Handling skills including, low and high speed turns, getting on step, holding station, ferries, eddy turns,
  • River Reading and running rapids
  • Friction Locks
  • Coming along side another vessel
  • Patient packaging and care within the vessel
  • Boat Recovery after it has run aground
  • Strategies for capsized vessel recovery
  • Tethered Rescue Techniques
  • Rescue scenario

We only offer this as a private course

Our courses ensure personalized hands-on training through human-based scenarios

Private Courses

Training Maintenance

If you have a group that would like to review their training together, the training maintenance program may be right for you.

Your group pays the instructor’s daily teaching fee and travel costs associated with bringing the instructor to your training location, along with an annual fee to be part of the maintenance program. This is generally a pretty reasonable approach for training departments because:

  • it allows us to deliver the training in small chunks every year, rather than in one big chunk every three years
  • it gives department members more annual hands-on time with their skills
  • new members can integrate into maintenance programs by jumping on an open course from our public schedule

We track your members, and their status on course content completion within a three year cycle, which mirrors a traditional three year recertification cycle.  It’s an excellent value for the cost, and allows you to review your skills in your own backyard.

The training maintenance program replaces the need to recertifiy your training on a traditional three year recertification cycle.

Sorry – there’s no individual audit program available for this course

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