Following Hurricane Ike in 2008, the Galveston Fire Department, Galveston Beach Patrol, Galveston Police Department, and Jamaica Beach VFD joined forces to create the Galveston Marine Response Team. The goal is to improve water rescue capabilities by merging resources held by each agency into one organized group.
GMR is under the direct supervision of the City of Galveston Emergency Management. A command team comprised of one representative from each agency works with the Emergency Manager to establish training standards, response policies and equipment procurements. Currently, there are over 60 qualified members from the 4 agencies.
Members participate in an annual qualification swim, swift water rescue training and a Mass Casualty Drill. While this concept was formed to improve evacuations and rescues during a Hurricane, it has resulted in improved communications and response procedures for all water related emergencies.