CFD to borrow 3 sets of dive equipment for water rescues

Cleveland 19 News gets answers at the Cleveland Fire Department

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - It's taken only 24 hours for Cleveland Fire Department Chief Angelo Calvillo to address the Dive Team mess Investigator Scott Taylor uncovered on Tuesday.

Taylor started tossing tough questions at the chief when he discovered the Fire Department's Dive Team couldn't make any under water rescues because their breathing equipment hadn't been serviced.

The Union said it's been almost a year since the Dive Team's last inspection but department spokesperson Larry Gray said he believes it hasn't been that long and admits the Dive Team could only make surface rescues if called upon.

"In the interim since our last discussion, we have reached out to our Ohio regional partners and we were able to receive three sets of certified dive equipment, which allows our divers to immediately enter the water to expedite under water rescues," Gray said.

Taylor also reported that the Dive Team's fast-water rescue boat isn't in the water. It's been at the shop for inspection for the past two weeks. After Taylor's investigation, the boat is now on its way back and could hit the water by Friday.

Gray says the mess isn't anybody's fault. The city's timing with outside contractors created the delay, plus the Dive Team has a second boat to use but again, up until our story, the Dive Team couldn't do under water rescues.

Taylor asked "Isn't it just plain stupid for a Fire Department and from a safety perspective to have a Dive Team that doesn't have air tanks and no boat? That makes no sense."

"Well, to the public it might appear that way, but we always have back up," Gray said. "We always have things in place so in the event of a situation like that we will be able to respond."

Gray says there is no time table on when the Dive Team's own equipment will be inspected so they can use it in future water rescues.

We asked for an on-camera interview with Calvillo and he declined.

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