Hannibal honors Swift Water Rescue Team efforts

Hannibal honors Swift Water Rescue Team efforts.

"I like the water. I always have. It's second nature to me," said Dustin Royal, an engineer with the Hannibal Fire Department.

It's this same type of second nature that distinguishes four men as part of Hannibal's Swift Water Rescue Team.

"It's a special set of skills," added Royal.

Just last month Missouri declared a state of emergency following severe flooding in it's southeast region.

That's when Hannibal's eilte team got the call for deployment.

"It picked up really fast and I think we went on 20 different missions," said Royal.

However this team's missions weren't like most emergency responders.

They were only called to rescues involving fast moving water.

"You always have to be thinking ahead, because if you're thinking about what's right here, you're already past it," said Captain Jeff Moore.

Through special training and certification, this team is able to handle some of the most dangerous flooding scenarios.

"A male and a female were boating on the lake fishing. It was raining and flooding. Their boat went over the spillway and that was the one where we had to swim out into the swift water and rescue them," said Moore.

The City of Hannibal honored the four rescue team members Tuesday night.

But for these firefighters, it's all just part of the job.

"I was telling the guys if they called us tomorrow, we would go back, or someplace else, we would do it again," said Moore.
"It's nice to know that our four-man team was able to accomplish a mission that all those people down there couldn't," said Royal.

The Poplar Bluff Police Department and Butler County also recognized members of Hannibal's Swift Water Rescue Team.

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