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Coast Guard helps rescue injured man from Rogue River cliffside

The Coast Guard said that it responded to evacuate a man who fell from a cliff near Galice.

Posted: Jun 29, 2020 12:08 PM
Updated: Jun 29, 2020 12:22 PM

GALICE, Ore. — A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter crew helped to rescue an injured man stranded on a cliffside along the Rogue River on Sunday, according to a statement from the agency.

USCG said that a local fisherman spotted the man dangling from a cliff hundreds of feet above the Rogue River downstream of Galice. The fisherman had to travel back to Galice in order to call 911, prompting multiple agencies to respond.

Rescue crews found the man several hundred feet below the top of the cliff following an apparent fall, as firefighters across the river told him to remain calm. Other rescuers worked their way toward the scene through backroads to Maple Gulch, off Stratten Creek Road.

"The victim’s vehicle was found on a remote road leading to the scene. It appeared to be stuck in a high-centered position and the tires had been worn down to the point of deflation from spinning in an assumed effort to free the vehicle," USCG said. "A window had been smashed out and no valuables reportedly left inside."

Because of the remote location, Rural Metro Fire called in Coast Guard assistance. An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew responded around 8:15 p.m. — arriving on the scene at sunset and hoisting the man from the cliff as darkness fell.

USCG said that the man was flown to Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center with an injured leg as he periodically lost consciousness.

“Thanks to the U.S. Coast Guard, the mission was completed safely in three-and-a-half hours,” said Austin Prince, chief of operations for Rural Metro Fire. “The rescue by ground crews involving a nearly-vertical rappel would have taken significantly longer.”

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