[UPDATE 12:53 p.m.] Ongoing Rescue for Man Reported to Have Spinal Injuries After Falling Down a Hill Near 299
Around 11:15 a.m., a report came in to the Emergency Call Center that a man had fallen over an edge near mile marker 21 on Route 299. Reports from the scene over the scanner indicate the man has possible spinal injuries and is unable to move at least part of his lower body.
Cal Fire’s chopper 102 has been requested as well as a crew from High Rock to help hoist the man from the area where he has fallen.
A Cal Fire engine is on scene as well as a paramedic. At first, they were requesting a medevac (an aerial medical flight) but the request for that has been canceled.
Here’s Google’s zoomable map of the area.
UPDATE 12:10 p.m.: According to Cal Fire Battalion Chief Paul Savona, an adult male working along Hwy 299 near Chezem Road was “walking and fell.” Savona said that the High Rock Inmate crew is coming to provide manpower to cut a trail line if needed or to assist in moving the patient. He also confirmed that Cal Fire’s helicopter is on the way to assist.
UPDATE 12:17 p.m.: Mark McKenna, our photographer is on the scene.
UPDATE 12:53 p.m.:
Cal Fire Chopper 102 flew the patient, a 26-year-old male, to a local hospital, according to the Chief of Blue Lake Fire Ray Stonebarger.
Cal Fire Chopper 102 transporting the patient to the hospital.
Stonebarger said the victim was about a 1/4 of a mile down a steep embankment. The patient received what they believe are moderate injuries. However, the patient had difficulties moving his lower extremities. Crews were able to get him up the hill and to the helicopter.California Conservation Corp was doing work in the area but there is no confirmation that he was an employee.
This rescue moved relatively quickly for such a remote area which is outside normal response areas. In part, that was because the Assistant Fire Chief of Willow Creek, Tim La Londe, was traveling through the area with another firefighter. A Cal Fire unit was also close by.
Two Willow Creek engines, one Six Rivers Forest Service engine, a Cal Fire engine and helicopter, three Blue Lake Fire engines and the California Highway Patrol assisted. The High Rock crew was canceled on their way to the scene.
Measure Z, the 5-year sales tax increase, provides the money for mutual aid which provides assistance to departments covering outside of their usual response zones.