Rescue Technician: Cave Rescue I/II

NFPA 1006 Certification

Class is now open for non-Certification registration 

(scroll down to register using the PayPal button)

Certification registration should be open soon on the Alabama Fire College website 

July 27 - July 31, 2023 (Certification Students)

July 27 - July 30, 2023 (non-Certification Students)

Four days of intensive hands-on training. The course is Thursday through Sunday for all students. NFPA Certification students must also attend Monday for exams. This class is sanctioned by the Alabama Fire College and is the ONLY NFPA 1006 Certified course in Cave Rescue in the nation.

Students seeking NFPA Certification who have proper prerequisites (Rescue Technician: Rope if certified prior to April 2010, or RT: Rope Level I and RT: Rope Level II if certified after April 2010) must register through the Alabama Fire College. 

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Any individual interested in developing the array of technical, medical and management skills required to conduct cave/cliff/high angle rescue. This includes personnel from cave rescue units, fire departments, rescue squads, emergency management agencies, park service personnel, first responders, and EMTs. Individuals not working for an agency who are interesting in caving and cave rescue are welcome and encouraged to attend; all levels of experience are welcome. 

This course is recommended for all cavers, even those not interesting in joining rescue teams. Many safety skills are learned, and knowing what to do if something happens may just save a life. 

CLASS STRUCTURE: We work hard to provide consistent training and allow time for students to have hands on experience for all of the skills. Every training exercise has multiple rotations to ensure every person may experience every station/component. It is important to attend all four days, as the skills and knowledge build throughout the course. The first and second days have classroom sessions and hands-on learning stations. On the third day, we build upon the foundations by creating mini rescue scenarios where students start taking active leadership roles utilizing skills learned. This builds to the last day, when all the training culminates in a full day-long mock rescue simulating a more realistic scenario, combining all the components of the course. Let your own unique creativity and problem-solving skills shine as you work as a team to save your patient!

TOPICS COVERED: This course covers all phases of cave rescue and management, including:

· Single rope technique · Incident command system · Underground environment · Underground communications

· Cave & Wilderness specific medical considerations · Response systems · Patient packaging and movement

· Hauling/lowering systems · Vertical rescue · Extrication techniques · Pre-planning and logistics

Cost is $150 without NFPA Certification

$350 with NFPA Certification (Out-of-State NFPA Certification $590)

Those who require NFPA certification MUST register through Alabama Fire College website or ph. (800) 241-2467

Cavers and other individuals who are not going through NFPA certification can pay $150 here via PayPal. 

Please include all participant's names and email addresses when registering.

Class is now open for registration

Current enrollment: 3 (Limited to 30 students)

If for some reason you end up unable to attend class, please let HCRU know at least two weeks prior.


Students need to bring the following:

1. Sturdy, lugged-sole lace-up boots 

2. Rugged outdoor clothing (no turnout gear) 

3. Well-fitted gloves with leather palms and full fingers (work gloves are fine) for rope work

4. Gardening-type gloves (polyester with nitrile palms are popular) for caving

5. Soft-capped kneepads (such as volleyball type pads) 

6. Personal medical supplies (medications, Epi pen, etc.) 

7. Cash for lunch Thursday and Friday (not all local restaurants accept credit cards)

8. Saturday and Sunday we will be in field all day, you will want snacks and a bag lunch

9. A backpack you don't mind getting muddy is helpful to carry gear, water, and snacks

The HCRU can provide the following, but if you have your own, please bring them:

1. UIAA/CE-Approved helmet, with chinstrap bracket 

2. Waterproof headlamp and batteries 

The HCRU will provide:

1. All necessary technical equipment, including climbing and rappelling systems. 

- If you are a vertically competent caver, you may bring your own SRT gear, however if it does not meet HCRU safety standards you will be required to use a provided system. All systems must include a Quick Attach Safety (QAS).

HELPFUL KNOWLEDGE / PREP WORK: All the following will be covered as a part of the course, but it will enhance your experience to work on these things before class if you are not yet familiar.

KNOTS: Click to go to an animated step by step instruction for tying the following:  Alpine Butterfly  -  Bowline  -  Double Fisherman  -  Prusik  -  Water Knot  -  Figure 8: Follow-Through  -  Figure 8: Double ("Bunny Ears")

INCIDENT COMMAND SYSTEM: The command structure under which rescues take place. If you are unfamiliar with this, we recommend you take the following *free* online FEMA courses: 

IS-100.c Introduction to Incident Command System

IS-200.b ICS for Single Resources and Initial Action Incidents

HCRU Map Page

PDF of this class description 

Class Schedule

Class begins at 0800 on Thursday at

Brindlee Mountain Fire Station 1 - 4373 U.S. 231, Union Grove, AL‎ - (256) 498-3109

This is a NEW station so it may not be in your GPS devices, so please use: 34.47079, -86.56802


Class will be held rain, heat or shine.

We train for real-life situations. Come prepared for the weather!

Looking for a place to stay? Information on Camping

If you prefer a hotel, Downtown/South Huntsville area is a popular location to stay, about 20-30 minutes north of the class location with an easy drive and lots of food options. Arab is another option, about 15 minutes south.