Accident Database

Report ID# 1021

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  • Other
  • Hypothermia
  • Near Drowning
  • Cold Water
  • Inexperience

Accident Description

On November 16, 1987, Ranger Ralph Huebner of the UDSRR observed an inexperienced group of paddlers approaching Masthope Rapids. Because of the cold conditions, he monitored their progress and observed one canoe capsize while another became grounded on a rock. He grabbed a life vest and rescue bag, then proceeded on foot to assist. He instructed the youths to get on the upriver side of the canoe and wade towards him. Although the water was only knee deep, they lost their footing and were swept downriver. Huebner talked two of the victims to shore, rescuing the third with his throw bag. He then coordinated treatment for hypothermia, and advised the group to terminate their trip.

Ranger Hubner was commended for protecting park visitors from serious injury or death.

Source: NPS press release

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