Ice Rescue Brings Out Multi-Agency Response
By Ex-Chief Dean W. Pappas
February 14, 2019

Tuesday evening, at around 6 p.m., Katonah Fire Department was dispatched to the Muscoot Reservoir on a report of a dog on the ice circling a hole, fearing the dog’s owner had fallen through the ice. The reported ice rescue resulted in a large-scale multi-agency response. Initially, KFD's 2211, 2213, Rescue 17 and Utility 8, with the boat, responded to the scene where NY State Police and NYC DEP Police were staging. While responding, Car 2213 placed Yorktown Heights FD's Water Rescue Unit on stand-by in case additional assets were needed. Ladder 39, Utility 22, and Engine 117 also responded. Ladder 39's thermal imaging system was utilized to transmit from the tip of the ladder to a computer screen in the cab of the truck, to scan the reservoir for possible victims. As the operation progressed, NYSP's aviation unit located three holes in the ice. KFD's boat was launched into the reservoir to check the holes while the aviation unit left to re-fuel. Car 2211 then requested a response to the scene from YHFD's WRU (Water Rescue Unit).

Yorktown's WRU launched its boat to assist with the search. KFD members entered onto the ice to check a hole that was approximately 200 yards off shore while YHFD checked 2 other holes that were closer together. Bedford Hills' Rescue 10 relocated to Route 35 to provide additional scene lighting. Over the course of three-and-a half hours, the three different sections of the reservoir, and the surrounding areas, were thoroughly searched. All 3 holes initially located were checked and no results were found. All units picked up and the scene was cleared by 9:30 p.m. It was determined that it was most likely not a dog that was seen by a passerby and just a wild animal out on the ice. There were no signs of any human interaction with the reservoir other than those marks made by our firefighters. We would like to thank NYSP, NYC DEP Police, BHFD, YHFD, KBHVAC, WEMS and WCDES Battalion 13 and County Car 4 for their assistance.

Units: Katonah Fire Department: Car 2211, Car 2213, Rescue 17, Engine 117, Ladder 39, Utility 8, Utility 22 and boat
Mutual Aid: Yorktown Heights Fire District: Rescue 55 and Dive Team Bedford Hills Fire Department: Engine 199 (stand by), Rescue 10 (scene) WCDES Battalion 13 & County Car 4 NYC DEP Police NY State Police