Basic Water Rescuer (BWR)

Designed for personnel who may be deployed to a basic (still) water environment, such as lakes, ponds and canals, where they may be required to undertake rescues. The course is a mixture of theory and practical sessions. The content includes the use of a variety of rescue equipment.

Content includes

  • Rescue 3 philosophy
  • Rescuer safety
  • Water and flood hazards
  • Personal and team equipment
  • On-scene safety briefing and site control
  • Pre-planning and incident management
  • Medical and de-contamination considerations
  • Considerations for night operations
  • Mud, ice and unstable surface considerations
  • Communications
  • Basic swimming and self-rescue
  • Bank-based rescue options (eg throwbags)
  • Entries and exits to/from the water
  • Shallow water techniques
  • Use of rescue platforms, sleds and boards
  • Tethered swim
  • Untethered swim
  • Use of masks, fins and floating rescue devices
  • Dealing with panicking/stressed casualties
  • C-spine rolls
  • Shallow water search techniques

Contact hours

12 hours


  • Must be a confident swimmer.
  • Minimum age: 18

Qualification valid for

3 years