Firefighters used low angle rope rescue techniques to hoist two crash victims after extricating them from a wreck that left two other passengers dead in Northeast Portland Monday afternoon.
Crews responded to the call for a single vehicle crash around 4:15 p.m. at NE 16nd Avenue and NE Fargo Street after witnesses reported seeing a car slam into a large tree before coming to rest in a deep ditch filled with water, according to a department news release.
Gresham Engine 74 was the first on the scene and found the vehicle submerged in over a foot of water with the four victims trapped inside.
More resources were called for and a total of four engines, two ladder trucks and three ambulances responded.
Portland Truck 7 and Gresham Truck 71 worked to extricate the part from the wreckage while other firefighters maintained safety at the scene and prepared to administer patient care.
Due to the depth of the ditch and the steep incline, a rope rescue was used to guide the two surviving victims to the awaiting ambulances.
They were transported in critical condition to a local hospital while the other two victims were pronounced dead at the scene.
"This was a very severe crash requiring multiple resources and specialty technical rescue techniques," Portland Fire & Rescue Battalion Chief Kevin Shanders said. "The great teamwork and communication between both fire departments achieved the best possible outcome in a difficult situation."
The cause of the wreck is currently under investigation.