​​​​​Virginia Beach EMS Marine Rescue Team

Our Story



The Virginia Beach EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Marine Rescue Team was originally established in August 1991 as an EMS water rescue program for the immediate response and timely arrival of a specially trained and equipped rescue dive team. The team was the first dive team in Hampton roads to have certified Public Safety Divers through the nationally recognized Emergency Response Diving International (ERDI) agency. 

As the team has evolved, it has become one of the region's most highly trained and efficient volunteer EMS Special Operations team. The team  membership consists of Coxswains, crew members, rescue swimmers and specially trained divers who hold national certifications through the U.S. Lifesaving Association (USLA), ERDI, and the American Red Cross agencies. 

The team responds to all requests for rescues above and below the water surface, including boats in distress, motor vehicles in the water, drownings, flood water rescues and ice water rescues.  The team patrols the beaches and inland waterways of Virginia Beach all year round. 

The Team has several all-weather rescue boats outfitted with state of the art side scan sonars along with a Zodiac boat used for rapid deployment.  The boats include: 

Rescue Boat 1 – 24ft Willard RHIB
Rescue Boat 2 – 24ft Northwind RHIB
Rescue Boat 3 – 25ft SAFE Boat
Rescue Boat 4 – 15.5ft Wing Full-Inflatable
Rescue Boat 6 – 20ft Sea Ark ​

The team also has two jet skis and three response trucks.  Captain Sarah Druy is the current team Squad Commander.

Members are on call 24/7, 365 days a year.  In addition to passing a background check, all team members must pass a rigorous physical fitness test, safety equipment knowledge/usage tests, Emergency Vehicle Operations training, United States Coast Guard and other water and marine specialty testing and certifications. This ensures the team maintains a high standard level of readiness for all seasons and conditions. Our Motto : "Water Rescue that's what we do" is exemplified by every member of this team! If you feel you have what it takes to become part of this team and help serve our community, continue to look around this site and contact us.