Breaking News: Los Alamos Firefighters Rescue Teen From 100-Foot Fall into White Rock Canyon

High angle rescue experts from the Los Alamos Fire Department lift a 15-year-old Los Alamos girl up from a 100-foot fall into White Rock Canyon today. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Rescuers carry the girl to an awaiting ambulance. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

By CAROL A. CLARK
Los Alamos Daily Post

A 15-year-old Los Alamos girl was airlifted to an Albuquerque hospital with unknown injuries today after falling 100 feet into White Rock Canyon.

Los Alamos Fire Chief Troy Hughes did confirm that the girl was able to communicate with her rescuers.

“She fell in a difficult area so it’s not going to be easy getting her out … it’s going to take some time,” Hughes said at the scene.

The high angle rescue operation took more than two hours as firefighters battled falling rocks and gusting winds. The rescuers responded to a 911 call at 3:20 p.m. from the girl’s friends who were hiking with her in the Hells Hole portion of the canyon.

Family members began to gather at the scene. One of the two friends hiking with the girl remained in a location 25 feet above where her friend lay injured. She was later walked out safely and unharmed.

Using a series of ropes and pulleys, firefighters were lowered down to the girl. Once treated, she was placed in a gurney and hoisted by ropes a few feet at a time up to the top of the canyon where firefighters lifted her to safety. She was placed in an ambulance and driven to Overlook Park at about 6 p.m., to an awaiting CareFlight helicopter. The girl’s mother rode in the front seat with the pilot as two CareFlight medics cared for her daughter at the rear of the helicopter during the flight to Albuquerque. 

High angle rescue involves unique hazards and requires special training and equipment to perform safely. Los Alamos firefighters maintain high angle rescue preparedness by training in areas such as Hells Hole because of the steepness and difficulty of the terrain.

Los Alamos Police Sgt. Jeff Regenold and Fire Chief Troy Hughes raise accident scene tape as firefighters roll the injured girl to an awaiting ambulance. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Los Alamos Fire Chief Troy Hughes at the scene. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Firefighters form a line to begin hoisting the gurney carrying the injured teen. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Scenes from today’s accident at White Rock Canyon. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

A series of ropes were used to rescue the teen who fell 100 feet into White Rock Canyon today. Photo by Katy Korkos

Scenes from today’s accident at White Rock Canyon. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Deputy Fire Chief Justin Cassel communicates with rescuers at the scene of today’s accident at White Rock Canyon. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Deputy Fire Chief Justin Grider, left, at the scene of today’s accident at White Rock Canyon. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Scenes from today’s accident at White Rock Canyon. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Family and friends gather with Fire Chaplain Jeff Eichorst in the yellow vest and wait for rescuers to bring up the injured girl. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Scenes from today’s accident at White Rock Canyon. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

The ambulance carrying the injured girl arrives at Overlook Park. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Firefighters and CareFlight medics rush the injured girl to an awaiting helicopter. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

CareFlight medics prepare their patient for the trip to Albuquerque. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

CareFlight helicopter. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

The CareFlight helicopter leaves for Albuquerque with the injured girl and her mother onboard. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

 

 

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