TUCSON, Ariz. – A hiker who fell into medical distress in Pima Canyon near Tucson was rescued via an Air and Marine Operations helicopter crew Monday afternoon.
Shortly before 4 p.m., AMO agents from the Tucson Air Branch responded to a report of an adult male hiker in distress. Deputies from the Pima County Sheriff’s Office were on scene and had requested an air evacuation. The man was located in a rugged ravine approximately a mile north of the Pima Canyon trail head in the Santa Catalina Mountains, making a ground evacuation extremely dangerous.
After receiving the call for assistance, AMO agents responded in a UH-60 black hawk helicopter equipped with a HOIST device capable of lowering and lifting equipment and personnel from the helicopter. The subject was secured in a medical litter and lifted to the helicopter, where he received medical attention from EMT trained AMO crew members.
Agents then transported the subject to a nearby location where advanced medical personnel were standing by to transport the man to a local hospital.
“This is a good example of how AMO routinely works with its state and local partners, and how well it serves the public,” stated Tucson Air Branch Director Mitch Pribble. “Working alongside Sheriff’s deputies and rescue personnel, our crew did a great job.”
AMO routinely responds to requests for assistance with searches and rescues in coordination with partner law enforcement agencies. Rescue operations like this are considered high-risk, given the altitude and treacherous terrain. Using specialized equipment and training, AMO provides a highly specialized capability in conducting these types of rescues.
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