New boat for the Russell County Dive Team

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | email | Twitter

PHENIX CITY, AL (WTVM) - The Russell County Sheriff's Department just received a new piece of equipment that will help change the way they do their jobs.

Because of a grant from the Department of Homeland Security, the Russell County Sheriff's Department Dive Team now has a new ride.

Russell County Dive Team leader, Joshua Blair told News Leader Nine, "It's going to help out tremendously because it's going to allow us to actually move to the location of where we're going, to have to by diving and not having to be transferred from other agency's boats. It allows us to control the operation."

The new boat will allow divers to respond to crime scenes and other emergencies in surrounding counties.

"We will use it for evidence recovery and for drowning victim's body recoveries. We will use it for anything that the Sheriff actually needs us to take care of," Blair explained.

In the past the dive team had to borrow boats and equipment from other agencies, and now it's all in one place, and at their disposal.

Blair said, "The platform of the board is it's going to allow us to put more divers in the water at one time and is going to be a lot safer for our divers to be able to have all of the safety equipment right there with us as we dive."

The Dive Team actually took the boat out on the water for the first time last week, to get a feel of how to use it. They are planning to hold training sessions for the Dive Team so everyone can be ready to go in the boat when its needed.

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