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How Houston-area first responders train and prepare for storms like Beta

HOUSTON – With Tropical Storm Beta bashing the Gulf coast, first responders may get a chance to put some unique training to the test.

Inside a warehouse near Austin, Rick Cummins trains the next generation of water rescuers at his Fathom Academy. Since it opened two and a half years ago, Cummins has trained about 300 first responders, with more than 90% of them from the Houston area. The goal is to put them in real-life flooding scenarios that we’ve seen in recent years, including Hurricane Harvey and Tropical Storm Imelda.

“Most of the fatalities that occur in this type of rescue environment are not the victims,” Cummins says. “They are the rescuers.”

When KPRC 2 visited Fathom Academy, the Montgomery County Precinct 5 team was there. Watch their training in the video above.

Cummins also had tips for people who might find themselves stuck in high water and in need of rescue. See his tips in the video below:


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