Con Crew Slashes Path to Injured Boy Who Spent Night in Woods With Broken Femur
A 14-year-old boy spent the night in the woods and was rescued early this morning by multiple people working together.
Early this morning a Redway resident and KMUD board member, Cody Dillon, heard shouting from near his home on West Coast Road. He says he was first woken by neighbors having a dispute when he thought he heard shouting from the woods about 3:30 a.m.
“I heard someone yelling ‘help me,'” he explained. “Maybe every five minutes he would yell it.” Dillon said that when a Humboldt County Sheriff’s deputy showed up around four to deal with the neighbors’ dispute, he told the officer about the situation but the officer declined to look for the individual yelling.
But the yelling continued after the deputy left. About 4:30, Dillion said, the yelling started to be more regular. “I called 911. I tried to get to him but there was too much brush and too much poison oak. A crew from Cal Fire came and they started into the woods and then some Technical Rescue guys came.”
At one point the crew couldn’t hear the yelling anymore. They had lost contact with the individual. Eventually, though they re-established verbal contact, Dillon said. A con camp crew came and “ran chainsaws for about half an hour. It took them an hour and a half to get him out.”
With the newly slashed trail, emergency crews “got him out on a stretcher,” said Dillon. “His right femur was broken.”
Dillon said he was told that the boy was only 14 and had “been out there since yesterday.”
“Great job Southern Humboldt Technical Rescue, Redway Fire, Cal Fire, Paramedics and everyone else who came out and helped to save this 14 year old kid from the woods,” Dillon later wrote on his Facebook page.
We agree and want to add thank you to Dillon for persevering til he got help for the boy.
UPDATE 10:50 a.m.: According to Devon Ellsworth, an engineer with Cal Fire, “Around 6:30 a.m., we received a call about a possible rescue into the woods with a broken leg.” Ellsworth said that Redway Fire and Cal Fire were the initial emergency responders. But soon the two crews decided they needed assistance.”We started searching and decided we needed to call for Southern Humboldt Technical Rescue,” explained Ellsworth.
Making their way through the thick brush and trees, they finally reached “a minor with a leg injury.” The youth told the crews that he had been out there since about 8 p.m.
Realizing they would need a better path to remove the youth, Ellsworth said, “We called for an inmate crew to cut brush to get him out.” The inmates used chainsaws to clear a way through the woods as emergency crews gave medical aid to the boy. After putting him on a backboard, Ellsworth described using specialized equipment to protect the youth. “We packaged the patient in a Stokes basket,” she said.
With the help of the inmate crew,–“They were key,” Ellsworth said–the boy was carried through the woods. “We met up with the ambulance and transferred care to them,” she explained.
Well done, folks.
Hattip to Terri Klemetson of KMUD for being on top of this story early.