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6-27-2023 High-Angle Rescue Response


On 6/27/2023 at 12:44 PM Anderson Island Fire/Rescue responded to an incident involving a high-angle tree rescue at the corner of Olympic Place and Island Drive. Upon arrival, our crews encountered a man inverted in a harness suspended from a tree approximately 80 feet from the ground. The man had sustained critical injuries, requiring high-angle rope access rescue.


High-angle rescues are high-risk, low-frequency events conducted by Technical Rope Technicians with specialized certification and often require a multi-agency response.


Working swiftly and efficiently, our dedicated team requested necessary resources to mitigate further injury to the patient, while ensuring the safety of first responders and others involved in the rescue. Through the efforts of tree expert Dave Pollard, and Leo Siefner, the patient was secured with a complex harness they created with anchors and ropes to lower him to ground level. Anderson Island EMS immediately assumed trauma care and was joined by West Pierce Fire paramedics. Subsequently, the patient was transported to Madigan Army Medical Center, a Level II trauma facility.


Special recognition to West Pierce Fire who provided personnel and equipment from Station 20 and a ladder engine from Station 21. Additional coordinated support by Pierce County Ferry, as well as assistance from Tanner Electric’s island team, contributed to the successful outcome of the rescue operation.


We commend the swift response from our partner agencies and would like to express our sincere appreciation to the individuals who promptly reported the incident to South Sound 911.


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