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Like all elite branches of law enforcement or the military, the Water Operations Unit of the South Australian Police demand high standards of fitness, stamina and intelligence in their recruits. More than just divers, the team are police officers first and foremost, conducting their duties at sea and on rivers or other inland waterways. They have a strong presence in search and rescue ops as well as the counterterrorism space. But the diving is where their unique skills really come to the fore.
Underwater, they are still potentially working a crime scene. Gathering evidence as small as a bullet casing or a diamond ring; or as large as a car driven into a river. And mostly in the complete darkness of muddy water where they cannot even see a hand in front of their face. Add into the mix the important but grisly job of recovering human bodies, one can see why the team need to have a certain temperament. They are an inspirational and very tight knit team of professionals, replicated in countless cities around the world by others performing the same role .