These drills start in May and end in October.
FDNY Captain Mike Romano says over the last ten years, these water rescues have increased dramatically.
"We’re trying to get the message to everybody that the ocean might look very inviting, but it’s a very dangerous place conditions change rapidly," Romano says.
Most of the unit’s rescues happen in areas where there are no lifeguards at all or when they’re off duty. The FDNY is urging people to swim only in designated areas and to never get in the water when the beaches are closed.
The message comes after a 14-year-old drowned while swimming in the Rockaways over the holiday weekend.
Rescue units are trained to locate where a swimmer most likely will drift. And identify rip currents.
But if you are stuck in a rip current, they say to remain calm, wave your hands to get attention, and if possible, swim parallel to the beach.
And if you are the one calling 9-1-1 for help, give as much information as possible.
FDNY Lieutenant, Artur Bronshteyn says, "If you don’t know where you are, tell us the third pole from lifeguard, Nathan’s hot dog, the lighthouse, parachute jump, we will get to you as soon as we can."