Rescue chopper plucks fallen rappeller from canyon


by Catherine Holland

Posted on March 14, 2013 at 7:46 AM

Updated Monday, Mar 18 at 3:45 PM

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NEAR GLOBE, Ariz. -- After spending the night in a canyon, rescue teams worked to bring a badly injured rappeller to safety Thursday morning.

According to Al Gameros of the Globe Fire Department, the 34-year-old man was rappelling at Parker Canyon near Roosevelt Lake Wednesday night when he fell about 200 feet into a canyon. He was badly injured in the fall.

It was too dark for the rescue helicopter to bring him out of that canyon so paramedics spent the night with him to keep him stable.

The chopper launched as soon as it was light enough.

The rescue operation was complicated both by the man's injuries and the steep bluffs.

"He's actually between two waterfalls," GCSO Det. Johnny Holmes explained. "With the weather that we've had these last few weeks, there's quite a bit of water running off there."

Aerial video from the scene showed emergency crews working over the man on a backboard. He was then air-lifted to Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn.