The Hamburg Water Rescue Unit (HWRU) was formed in the summer 1986 after tragedy struck off the shores of the Hamburg Town Beach. Through the efforts and assistance from Senator William Stachowski, the members of Hamburg Town Board, Hamburg police department, and members of the local fire departments, the Hamburg Water Rescue Unit was formed. Since that time, our unit has responded to hundreds of calls for help and saved numerous lives.
The Hamburg Water Rescue Unit is a Subordiate organization of the Hamburg Fire Chief's Association and is comprised of members from the membership companies of the Chief's Associattion. For insurance purposes, active members of the Hamburg Water Rescue Unit must be a member of one of the Charter or Active Organizations of the Hamburg Fire Chief's Association. Members wishing to join the HWU must be a member of their home company for a minimum of one year and have the aproval of their chief before being accepted into the Unit.
The HWRU responds to calls for assistance on Lake Erie as welll as inland waterways throughout the Western New York Region and Southern Ontario through the Advanced Local Emergency Response Teams or "ALERT" Agency ( http://www.wnyalert.com/ALERT/Home.html )
Over the past 25 years, the unit has gone through many changes. With the strong dedication of Local and State Politicians and the members of the Town of Hamburg fire companies, the unit has grown from a newly formed group of firefighters with basic training, to a very proud unit, highly trained in marine fire fighting, ice rescue, swift water rescue, and dive rescue and recovery. The Hamburg Water Rescue Unit is the only unit in the area (besides the Buffalo Cotter) that is equipped to fire fires on the water and in the marinas. This fire fighting equipment has also been used to support fires on shore as well.
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