Navy conducts winter rescue training at sea

By Jo He-rim
  • Published : Jan 17, 2019 - 16:39
  • Updated : Jan 18, 2019 - 09:26

Some 100 members of the Navy’s Sea Salvage and Rescue Unit have been jumping into freezing sea waters since Monday, as the unit began its annual winter training at the southern port city of Jinhae, South Gyeongsang Province.

This year’s program is focused on adapting to the cold sea water and overcoming challenges they may face in the sea, according to the Navy. 


During the five-day training, the SSU conducts various exercises, including scuba training in which divers explore the bottom of the sea to search for a sunken ship.

The highlight of the training was a dive into the cold sea wearing only shorts. Held on the fourth day of training Thursday, the rescue unit jumped into the icy cold waters while singing military songs. To warm up, they jogged and did special stretches before jumping into the water.

“Jumping into the cold sea, it felt like my hands and feet were breaking off, but I was able to overcome the difficulties because I was with my colleagues,” Lt. Lee Hyo-chul said. “I also gained confidence that I would be able to do my duties under any kind of circumstances from this cold sea training.”

On Friday, they were to undergo fin and mask training, swimming 2 kilometers in the sea.

“The purpose of the training this year is to make sure the SSU masters the strong mental ability and strength to fulfill their duty. We will continue to make efforts to protect and secure safety of the people,” SSU chief Lt. Hwang Byung-ik said.

The SSU was first established as the Navy’s Marine Operation Unit in 1950, and was renamed Sea Rescue Unit in 1955. For operational efficiency, the unit was reorganized as SSU under the Navy’s Special Warfare Flotilla last year. 

By Jo He-rim (