Injured hiker rescued off mountainside
January 07, 2011
Coast Guardsmen present a safety brief to personnel from Juneau Mountain Rescue prior to departing the Army National Guard Hangar to help rescue Keith Hutchins who contacted Alaska State Troopers after he was injured while hiking above 1,600 feet on Ripinski Mountain near Haines Thursday, Jan. 6, 2011.
The Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Wildlife Troopers, United States Coast Guard, Alaska Mountain Guides, Southeast Alaska Backcountry Adventures, Haines SAR Team, Skagway SAR Team, and Juneau Mountain Rescue responded to assist in the search.
Hutchins' cellular phone allowed searchers to obtain his exact location on the face of a cliff which would require technical equipment and training to access. However, a weak phone battery complicated the communication with Hutchins.
An Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk rescue helicopter crew medevaced Keith Hutchins at 11 a.m. and transported him to awaiting emergency medical personnel at the Juneau International Airport who transferred him to Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau at 12:50 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 6, 2011.
At approximately 11 am Thursday Hutchins was hoisted from the mountain by a United States Coast Guard helicopter and transported to Juneau for medical treatment of a possible spinal injury.
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