Koochiching County deputies will now have an extra arm when life depends on it.
Ordered Monday, deputies will carry in their squads an ARM-LOC, a device that can save lives in water rescue situations.
The ARM-LOC slides onto the arm of a victim that has fallen through the ice or in water current, with the rescuer or victim pulling a yellow lanyard to inflate and and lock the device into place, eliminating the need for the victim to grasp a rope.
The total price for nine devices is $4,491, which will be paid by a 2018 state of Minnesota Federal Boating Safety supplemental equipment grant.
Chief Deputy Jon Froemke said the device adds to the ways deputies can assist people.
“Any tool we can give our deputies to help the public and minimize the risk to everyone is something we want to have,” said.
In the past, Froemke said there have been situations when a victim is not strong enough to hang onto a rescue ring while being pulled to safety.
“This device ‘locks’ the arm of the victim in the device and will not come off, making sure we don’t lose the victim because they don’t have the strength to hang on,” he explained.
In addition, Froemke said the device will assist when someone has either fallen through the ice or in a swift water situation where there is current.
“We can throw this device up to 100 feet and as long as they can slip it over their arm and pull the inflation handle, we have them secured to the rescue line,” he said. “The main advantage is that in several situations this allows our deputy to not put themselves in danger by entering the water to rescue someone.”
The device can be deployed in seconds and re-deployed.