Thursday, January 5, 2017
LAFD Spokesperson: Brian Humphrey
Specially trained Los Angeles Firefighters safely rescued a homeless man from the rain-swollen Los Angeles River late Thursday morning.
Notified by Los Angeles Police Officers on patrol, the Los Angeles Fire Department was summoned at 10:56 AM on January 5, 2017 to the 2500 block of Fletcher Drive in Silver Lake, for a man stranded in a thicket of mid-stream vegetation by the rising stormwater.
A comprehensive ground and air response brought a pair of LAFD rescue helicopters, as well as dozens of Los Angeles Firefighters - including a pair of Swift Water Rescue Teams, to the broad concrete lined channel just north of Fletcher Drive, as well alternate rescue locations more than a mile downstream.
The LAFD helicopters, precluded from peforming a primary hoist rescue due to high-voltage electric lines above the victim, assisted with aerial reconnaisance and command support during the inclement weather, while remaining poised to perform a downstream rescue as needed.
Aided by ground-based firefighters who safely tethered their operations from alongside the channel, LAFD Swift Water Rescue Team members deployed an inflatable rescue boat to bridge the 25' gap across the fast-moving water to access the stranded 47 year-old man, who had reportedly been imperiled by rising water for as many as 12 hours.
Briefly evaluating the man as they fitted him with a bright yellow helmet and flotation vest, LAFD rescuers assured his safety during the brisk return to shore aboard the boat. Once ashore, the uninjured man was medically evaluated by LAFD personnel before declining an offer of ambulance transportaiton to an area hospital.
Once all rescuers were at a safe distance from the water, the pair of LAFD helicopters scoured two nearby miles of the churning flood control channel to assure there were no other victims.
Dispatched Units: T1 E201 E56 E4 RA804 E202 T2 E44 E3 CM22 T9 HR56 RA90 H0A H0B EM1 BC1 H2 H3 T3 E203 RA844 E90 SW88 UR89 E235 T35 E12 RA2 BC5 E21 RA10 RA55 E2 E27 RM2
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