Oregon Firefighters Conduct Cliff Rescue


On August 18, 2010 at 3:35 p.m. Clackamas Fire crews were called to Shadowbrook mobile home park at 13640 SE Hwy 212 in Clackamas for an elderly female that fell nearly 50 ft. over a cliff behind her home.

When crews arrived they found the woman lying on the nearly dry creek bed of river rocks and her husband was up against a tree halfway down the very steep incline, trying to talk to her. This could have easily turned into a rescue of two people since the husband started down after her.

Crews were able to get a verbal response from her as they were rigging the rope system to reach her. This "cliff" consisted of 25 ft. of a very steep angle then became a vertical 20 ft. drop straight down to the rocks.

Once crews reached the female and stabilized her, they had to assist the husband back up the cliff before they could begin bringing her up, secured in the rescue basket. Crews used a ladder truck to reach out over the home to use as a high point. This worked well in getting everyone safely up and over the edge of the cliff. The vertical part of the cliff actually had an overhang that had eroded out making this a difficult rescue.

Eventually, Clackamas firefighters were able to bring the woman safely to the top. She was then transported to a waiting Lifeflight helicopter and taken to Emanual Hospital for further evaluation. There were no injuries to firefighters during this rescue and the patient was awake when she was brought to the top of the cliff.