The Vermont State Police Underwater Recovery Team serves as a public safety diving team with the purpose of recovering people and evidentiary items. The team operates 24/7, 365 days a year and is capable of performing a number of technical underwater operations. The members of this team often include multiple levels of rank from trooper to lieutenant, assigned to various barracks or special assignments throughout the state.
The VSP Underwater Recovery Team has extensive capabilities to include ice diving, swift-water diving, night and zero-visibility diving, underwater salvage and underwater crime scene investigation.
The team utilizes advanced public safety dive technology including down imaging side scan sonar, and sector scan sonar. The Underwater Recovery Team has an equipment/command post vehicle, SCUBA compressor and cascade system, a remote operated vehicle (ROV), and underwater towable cameras. The VSP Underwater Recovery Team works closely with the Marine/Snowmobile Division and has access to 20 boats of various sizes for team activations.
The VSP Underwater Recovery Team regularly is activated throughout the state to search for and recover victims of water-related incidents and evidence associated with criminal activity in lakes, rivers, ponds and quarries. Although most assignments occur within Vermont, members also have traveled to Maine, New Hampshire, New York and the Province of Quebec.
In addition to their normal day-to-day duties as a state trooper, members of the VSP Underwater Recovery Team are trained NAUI certified divers. The team participates in the New England State Police Compact Public Safety Diver Consortium certification process. This process includes a multi-year instruction process including ERDI and TDI techniques. The team generally trains annually with counterparts in surrounding states including Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New York.