A 63-year-old hunter is safe and warm at home thanks to the swift rescue of RCMP Helicopter “Air 3” and its pilot near Dease Lake.
“Dease Lake RCMP received a call for assistance on Sept.14 at 4 p.m. from the B.C. Ambulance Service, said North District RCMP media relations officer Lesley Smith in a press release. “Members were asked to secure a landing site for an air ambulance helicopter which was en route to assist with extracting a male with a broken leg.”
The man had injured his leg while out in the rural terrain and was at least a three-hour hike away from the nearest road. His hunting partner, a 29-year-old male, had already hiked out in order to call for assistance.
Dease Lake RCMP Const. Andrew Curtis attended to the area and was advised the air ambulance was unable to land in the area due to the rugged terrain, altitude and weight restrictions of the passengers.
The RCMP helicopter Air 3 from Kelowna, flown by Greg Burgess, was in the area and able to assist with the rescue. Although it was close to dark, Air 3 attended the scene, transported Const. Curtis and the 29-year-old hunting partner back to the injured hunter’s location, Smith said.
Once all involved were on board the injured male was transported to the Stikine Health Centre in Dease Lake for medical assistance.
“The injured hunter was a very tough, experienced and prepared individual,” Const. Curtis said. “He had already made crutches and was ready to stay overnight, even though he had a broken leg. This rescue was unusual as the injured party was so prepared, and because Air 3 was in Dease Lake and available to get him to safety.”
“We were fortunate to have other emergency resources, such as an RCMP Helicopter, in the area,” Smith said. “The injured male would still be stranded and in considerable pain for hours had it not been for the assistance of the RCMP Helicopter, Pilot Greg Burgess and Const. Andrew Curtis. This is a prime example of how dedicated our members are at ensuring public safety and going the extra distance to help those in need.”