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Vernel Fall, Merced River, Yosemite National Park

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Seriously Injured Visitor Extricated From Park

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avatar Seriously Injured Visitor Extricated From Park
June 23, 2014 11:38AM
A 14-year-old visitor was seriously injured in Yosemite National Park on Thursday, June 19th. The boy, from Fontana, California, was on a day trip to Yosemite Valley when he sustained severe head trauma from a fall. The teenager was scrambling at the base of Lower Yosemite Fall with family members shortly after 2 p.m. when he fell from a large boulder, slipped about 20 feet down the side of the boulder, and dropped into a small “cave” formed in the talus field. Yosemite Emergency Communications Center quickly dispatched rangers after receiving multiple 911 calls from witnesses immediately after the accident.

Yosemite Valley rangers Mike Hastings, Scott Jacobs, Aaron Smith, Loren Fazio, Kevin Davis, Philip Johnson, and field trainee Matthew Payton responded. Finding the teen unresponsive and unconscious, responders decided to initiate a quick extrication via short-haul. The park’s contract helicopter, 551, flew to the site. Ranger David Pope, who arrived on scene shortly after initial responders, was then short-hauled with the boy to the Ahwahnee Meadow where the patient was transferred to a waiting air medical helicopter for transport to a local hospital.

Yosemite Valley Law Enforcement Ranger Ed Visnovske was the incident commander.
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