UPDATED: Video added below.
WCSO NEWS — At 2 PM on Memorial Day afternoon, the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue team as well as the Regional Aviation Enforcement Unit (RAVEN) were requested by the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District to assist in recovering an injured hiker.
The injured hiker, a woman in her mid to late 20’s, had been hiking on the Hunter Creek Trail when she fell and suffered injuries to her back and neck. Truckee Meadows Fire personnel made contact with the victim and immediately requested Search and Rescue assistance. Due to the extremely rough terrain and distance from the trailhead, the decision was made to request RAVEN for hoisting the victim out of the canyon. “Without RAVEN, transporting the victim off the trail would have taken at least two hours, and could have easily resulted in additional injuries to Search and Rescue or Fire personnel”, commented Deputy Jereme Wormington, the Search and Rescue Deputy on the scene.
The Washoe County Search and Rescue team and RAVEN are no strangers to the Hunter Creek Trail. “The Hunter Creek Canyon has more calls for service for rescues than any other hiking area that we service”, said Wormington.
After the victim was placed in a litter and secured for transport by the search and rescue HASTY team members, the county’s rapid response search and rescue experts, the RAVEN crew arrived overhead. RAVEN conducted two hoists, first the victim, and then the attending medic. Once on board the HH-1H Huey helicopter, the victim and medic were delivered to a waiting ambulance at the trailhead for further transport to Renown Medical Center.
Washoe County Search and Rescue has over 160 volunteers who donate their time and expertise to the county. Averaging over 100 rescues a year, these volunteers have saved the county substantial amounts of money over the years.
RAVEN was established in 1997, and since that time has conducted hundreds of rescues, as well as fire fighting and law enforcement operations.