RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Water safety has been at the top of many community members’ minds this past week following the tragic Memorial Day incident at Bosher’s Dam.

This week, five local fire departments across the area joined forces for the search on the James River. Responders with the Richmond, Henrico, Hanover, Chesterfield and Goochland Fire Departments have spent about 12 hours out on the James each day of the search so far. They have combed through about 9.5 miles of river space and land.

Henrico County Fire Department’s Battalion Chief Doug Reynolds said his responders received about 100 hours of training to prepare them for these kinds of missions. Together over these past few days, representatives from the different localities have battled heat, exhaustion and emotional distress.

“We’re just like everybody else,” Reynolds said. “The first day, we wanted to make the rescue, but now when it’s getting into two, three days — we all start to realize it’s a grim task and the only thing you can think of is the families.”

Representatives from the Henrico County Fire Department said they’re appreciative of the public’s willingness to help with the search effort, but the last thing first responders want is for any “Good Samaritan” to find themselves in trouble, because the waters are still dangerous.