Capital City Fire/Rescue personnel rescued an injured person on a trail near Thunder Mountain High School on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Capital City Fire/Rescue personnel rescued an injured person on a trail near Thunder Mountain High School on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

CCFR rescues injured person on trail in Mendenhall Valley

Contray to rumors, no one fell in the river.

Capital City Fire/Rescue personnel rescued a person experiencing a medical emergency on a trail near Thunder Mountain High School Wednesday afternoon.

There was ultimately unfounded speculation on social media that the call was due to someone falling into the river near the high school or related to an assault.

“Nobody fell in the river. It was a medical emergency on the trail with an individual,” said CCFR assistant chief Ed Quinto in a phone interview. “We all had a hike in, and then we had to use a four-wheeler to get the patient out.”

CCFR got the call at 3:35 p.m., and immediately responded, Quinto said. With the person inaccessible to CCFR’s vehicles, personnel transported the person in distress with their all-terrain vehicle, an option sometimes exercised by CCFR in situations off the roads. CCFR is responsible for rescues across the City and Borough of Juneau, which means they have to turn to ATVs, boats and even helicopters to perform rescues. The patient was taken to Bartlett Regional Hospital, Quinto said.

“It’s not unusual for us to go take care of people on trails,” Quinto said. “It was kind of unique because it was on the trail and we had to use our ATV and sleds to transport.”

With most manpower focused on first responder units, trucks and ambulances, rescues requiring auxiliary vehicles can take slightly longer, Quinto said. They called to stand up the ATV as soon as its use seemed like it could be a possibility Wednesday, Quinto said, which paid off when they required it.

“There’s always a delay for secondary vehicles. Same for helicopters. It takes a little while to get it ready for air rescue. We have to be aware that it takes a little longer,” Quinto said. “If we think we need something, we try to get it set up as quick as possible.”

• Contact reporter Michael S. Lockett at (757) 621-1197 or mlockett@juneauempire.com.

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