The Franklin County Sheriff s Office Dive Rescue Team was formed in September of 1993 under the leadership of Sheriff Jim Karnes.
To provide the Sheriff with an organized and experienced group of Deputies trained as Public Safety Divers.
To respond with trained personnel and specialized equipment to the scene of a water related incident for the purpose of saving human life, provide underwater recovery of drowning victims or accident victims in the water, and to provide assistance to the Detective Bureau in the recovery of property to be processed as evidence in a criminal investigation. In addition the Team is available to assist outside agencies upon request.
All members are Deputy Sheriffs who are certified scuba divers and have received additional hours of underwater search and recovery training and other specialized training. Members train twice a month in various bodies of water in and out of Franklin County. Divers become accustomed to diving in "minimal to zero visibility" water with underwater hazards and unusual bottom terrain. Safety is constantly stressed and practiced.
The Dive Rescue Team is a federally typed Type I Public Safety Dive Team and is equipped with an expansive assortment of equipment. This equipment includes a Freightliner M2 equipment truck, a Dodge 2500 pick-up truck, a Rescue One Connector Boat, a Zodiac Grand Raid Mark III, a flat bottom john boat, and an equipment trailer. Other equipment includes Kirby Morgan KM37 dive helmets, a portable breathing air compressor, generators, heaters, side scan sonar, an underwater Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV), and underwater metal detectors. Each diver is individually issued a complete set of SCUBA gear including protective suits, fins, full face mask and air tanks.