Boat rescue team to "keep things cool" at Water Follies - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Boat rescue team to "keep things cool" at Water Follies

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KENNEWICK, WA - The Atlantis and its crew are getting ready to set off for one of the most important missions at Water Follies...ensuring that both racers and spectators stay safe.

"We do driver extraction; we do treatment on the water; we have each sled equipped with EMTs, rescue divers, and also deck hands that are trained for capsule rescue," Chris Hansen told us, the Rescue Operations Leader for this year's hydro racing events. He's one of many who are part of the volunteer operation, but unlike many, he's been doing it for 32 years and doesn't plan on stopping anytime soon.

"I think my favorite Hollywood actor said it best...Steve McQueen after he drove formula one cars said: 'There is no stronger drug than motor sports', and that's me, I love racing."

Hansen has been part of many rescue missions.

"The scary part is a driver extraction, when they flip, they are unconscious and go into what we call a catatonic muscle freeze. In the case of one driver he lost his fingers and was bleeding out," Hansen informed us.

The rescue team not only helps racers, but also those who are attending, and Hansen has one big recommendation for people to stay safe this weekend.

"Drink a lot of water and electrolytes like Gatorade; we had two people go over yesterday for heat exhaustion in the park."

If anyone at Water Follies finds themselves in a bad situation, the boat rescue team will be there to help.

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