Third water rescue at Gila River in one week involving 5 teens

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By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron

GILA RIVER RESERVATION – Another rescue was conducted in the Gila River on Thursday night.

 It is the same area where a group of horse riders, their animals and also a kayaker have been saved from the rushing waters in the past week.

 Crews worked to pluck the individuals from the river.

Doug Matteson with the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, tells 3TV, “At about 7 p.m. tonight we had five teenagers who took it upon themselves to, as you just said, with all the problems we’ve had in the past week with the sheriff’s office saving people, to go rafting.”

While in the raft the group became stranded so two other teenagers got into a Ford pick-up truck and drove into the river to try to save them. A third teen jumped in the bed of the pick-up truck and shortly after the truck was dragged downstream.

Matteson explains, “We had five teenagers clinging to their lives, hanging on for dear life as the sheriff’s office had to come and rescue them again tonight.”

All five of the teens were rescued and checked out by paramedics.

Within one week MCSO has assisted in three rescue efforts.