Dive Search Rescue and Recovery Team

Alaska Dive Search Rescue and recovery team recieves govennor's award of excellence at 2023 alaska governer's safety & health conference

The Alaska Dive Search Rescue and Recovery Team was honored to recieve the Alaska Governer's Special Achievement Award for the category of Awards of Excellence at the 2023 Alaska Governer's Safety & Health Conference. The Governor’s Safety Award of Excellence is presented to organizations demonstrating distinction in safety and health of their personnel, the environment, assets and reputation that demonstrate and promote superior corporate citizenship.


The Alaska Dive Search, Rescue and Recovery Team (AK Dive Rescue) is an all-volunteer, unpaid, 501(c)(3) non-profit public safety water rescue/dive search and recovery, team that exists to provide the Department of Public Safety (DPS) a statewide capability above and underneath the waters surface. The team is activated by the State Search and Rescue Coordinator and is ready to deploy for recovery missions anywhere in Alaska usually within two hours of notification.

In addition to the above the Alaska Dive Search, Rescue and Recovery Team is dedicated to preventing as many tragedies as possible through public education on boating and water safety.

Why We Need Your Help:

According to the State Office of Boating Safety, Alaska has 10 times the national average of drowning deaths, but despite the high numbers of water fatalities the bodies of most victims are never recovered. This is in part to the remoteness and make up of most populated communities in Alaska who do not have water rescue or recovery teams do to funding issues. 

Why We Exist: 

We are working to change these stats buy: First educating the public on water, ice and boating safety and second buy having a team that can respond anywhere in the state with specialized tools and training not only to locate missing subject but also to recover them. We are activated through the Alaska Department of Public Safety's (DPS) Search and Rescue Coordinator.


Side Scan Sonar:  Used to search large bodies of water for evidence, bodies, vehicles and vessels.  Once the item is located the Sector Scan Sonar can be used to document the area and get a better picture of hazards before committing a diver to the situation.


Sector Scan Sonar:  Used to locate evidence, bodies of subjects, documenting underwater scenes, and used for diver safety. Can be used from a boat, land or through the ice. (300 feet of cable, but more can be requested if required)


Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV):  (ROV with sonar, camera and articulating arm) Used to verify targets of interest, search for subjects in hazardous environments (Hazmat, Under Ice, etc.) and recover subjects in conditions to hazardous or out of the reach of traditional Public Safety Divers max depth 2,000 feet.


Surface to Diver Communications:  We use full face masks, hard line communication from tender to diver and through the water communication.  All members are trained to use a tag line in the event of voice communication failure.


Dive Capabilities: 

Certified Underwater Criminal Investigators (6 Divers)

Black Water Diving

Under the Ice Search and Recovery Operations

Heavy Lift Bag Capability for the Recovery of Vehicles, Small Boats and Aircraft

Deep Diving Capability up to 300 feet or 2 hour of decompression (5 Divers)

Cave and Confined Space Diving Operations (5 Divers)

Current Diving (in current up to 2 knots)


Underwater Body and Evidence Recovery:

All divers are trained in body recovery procedures and some divers are trained on the documenting evidence underwater to include pictures, sketch, measurements and packaging of evidence and material underwater, six divers are certified as Master Underwater Criminal Investigators through several agencies.

Surface Water Search Operations:  Fully trained and equipped to do Surface Search Operations on swift water, lakes and coastal water.

Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Search Operations:  We have three State approved UAS operators and one Federal UAS operator that can operate state owned UAS Systems with FLIR.

Mud Rescue Operations: Fully equipped and trained Mud Rescue Team.

Surface Ice Rescue Operations: Fully equipped and trained Ice Rescue Team.


Under Ice Recovery Operations:  Fully equipped and trained to do under Ice Recovery Operations.


Swift Water Rescue and Recovery Operations:  Fully equipped and trained Technical Swift Water Team (Day/Night Operations)


Medical Capabilities:  Team of EMT-3A, EMT-1 and ETT trained personnel. BLS medical kit., AED, O2 Kit, 3 Hypothermia bags, Sked backboards, immobilization splints, and we operate under State of Alaska medical protocols.

Capable of Deploying from:






Activating The TEAM

We Deploy Throughout Alaska for Any Water Related Emergency!

We are alerted through the Alaska Department of Public Safety (DPS) Search and Rescue Coordinator.  Requests for our assistance can be made by any federal, state, community or tribal agency (NTSB, AST, AWT, VPSO, VPO, APD, Search and Rescue, etc) 

We charge nothing for our services.