Whidbey Island Navy Helicopter Called in for Snoqualmie Pass Rescue

Overnight, July 18, 2013, one navy search and rescue helicopter flew a long way to help a hiker injured – all the way from Naval Air Station NASWhidbeyHelicopter(NAS) Whidbey Island to Snoqualmie Pass.

The premiere search and rescue team was called in to assist in air lifting an injured hiker near Silver Peak in the Snoqualmie Pass area.  According to King County Search and Rescue, the Navy MH-60S helicopter ended up having to orbit and burn fuel to lower its weight before it could lower a medic to assess the injured hiker.

The NAS Whidbey Island Search and Rescue unit consists of 2 MH-60S helicopters, 10 pilots, 10 Rescue air crewmen and 3 SAR Medical Technicians (SMT’s).   Crews are highly trained in overwater and mountain rescue, including helicopter rappel, hoist and mountain landing.

The hiker,who fell and sustained a broken leg, was loaded into a rescue basket, hoisted off the mountain and transported by helicopter to Harborview Medical Center.  Rescue crews were concerned the terrain was too rugged to pack out the injured hiker safely.

In total, 35 trained King County Search and Rescue volunteers also responded to Silver Peak,  some helping to escort out three remaining hikers.



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