Fayetteville Police dive team trains with K-9s at White Lake

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BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WTVD) — As temperatures warm up, White Lake along with other popular swimming holes will be filled with people. That’s why the Fayetteville Police dive team is training now to prepare for emergency situations.

The Fayetteville Police dive team is often tasked with water search and recovery missions. The team had a training exercise Friday except this time divers got an extra hand from their K-9 counterparts.

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They are cadaver dogs, just like any K-9 they have a strong sense of smell. FPD is grooming that sense on the water so the dogs learn how to locate bodies. It takes coordination though. The dog is sniffing for the scent while the diver under water is looking for the victim.

When the dog picks up on something, he jumps off the dock and the diver is there with the reward.

Drowing is the 5th leading cause of accidental deaths in the United States. With summer first approaching, Fayetteville Police are preparing for the worst.

“It seems like the beginning of every season everybody thinks I can swim all the way across the lake and then they get tired,” Dive Team Instructor Chuck Campbell said. “So, and drownings happen unfortunately. And this way, we need to recover the body, we need to recover the victim. Because for me it would be horrific to know my family member is out there in the lake somewhere and I wasn’t able to recover them. This way this gives them closure to a horrible situation.”