|SILT HAPPENS #99-4
Content by Bego Gerhart (1T836) --- HTML by Matt Moore
|Whitewater Rescues by Steve Swanke 26 Jun 1999|
|We rescued 18 swimmers on Thursday and
Friday at the Big Drops.
We were able to be more aggressive with the RHIB, than we have been in previous years with Zodiac vessels, because the jet drive power train in the RHIB will not cause further harm to the swimmers being rescued. We have a large carrying capacity on the boat in the rescue environment. We had nine folks on board during one flurry of activity. Our visitors were having problems in "The Ledge Wave" in Big Drop 2 and the "Frog Hole" and "Satan's Gut" in Big Drop 3.
I was told by a mid-aged female: "you are God who descended on me from heaven". There were numerous others who were very happy to see us, their quotes just weren't so colorful.
We witnessed a row boat surf for two minutes in the "Frog Hole". The action with this surf made the high water video look pale by comparison It was unbelievable to see the forces of the water during this particular run.
Comments: It is interesting to see how delusional people get when immersed in cold water, especially the lady was who described 520 thusly. Is there not a separation of church and state issue here?
|99- 41||7- 2- 99||Suicide by Train||"Solitude" siding, 7 mi east of Green River|
|Dierk had been contemplating
this act for more than a year. He had been "wandering aimlessly" for 2 1/2 years
in his 68 VW bus named Mousse.
He had a Masters from MSU in geography and math, was an accomplished computer programmer and data analyst. For a while this spring he was camped at Slickrock Campground and had applied for jobs locally.
According to the typed note left in his bus, he was tired of being confused about his sexuality and he was an alcoholic. Said it was time to "pack it in from an intolerable life." So he let the Amtrak hit him. And left some letters and postcards to be mailed.
Comments: It takes way more distance than from the SAR Shed to the Fire Station to stop an Amtrak going 50 mph. The track sanders (for more traction) come on automatically in an emergency stop. The train people say suicide by train happens regularly in the cities.
GCSAR was called to supply two ATVs because it was unknown in the beginning if there was a road to the incident site.
Responders: Bego, Sam, Frank, Kent, Jimmy N, Dave L. responded but 1T4 wanted only 2.
Do Roman paramedics prefer IV's to 4's?
|99- 42||7- 4- 99||Overdue kids boating on the Dolores||IC = 1 T 4|
|From a camp at the lower
road crossing on the Dolores River, two 15 yr old boys floated down to the Colorado River
on K-mart tubes with no lifejackets. They hung around the confluence for a while, then
wrote a note in the sand and started back up the Dolores toward camp. By then, we were
mobilized cuz they were overdue. Deputy Brewer arrived in camp about the same time the
Comments: Our river rescue boat was put in the river and boat training happened.
Responders: Frank , Lloyd, Kent, Sam, Josh, Lee, Jennie
|99- 43||7- 4- 99||Lacerated Biker||SRBT|
|Paged out as a laceration
about 1 1/2 miles out. Josh responded with a 6 wheeler. While responding, a cell phone
call from the RP said the subject was walking out. He refused service
Responders: Josh, Lee
"Discipline without freedom is tyranny: Freedom without discipline
|Emergency Preparedness Fair|
|Doug "I love NYC" Squire put
on an interesting show. Most of the displays were about preparation of food and water for
putting into storage so your family can survive during natural or man-made disasters. Good
Michelle Walker brought her American Red Cross stuff. The NPS was there, showing a video of their new river rescue boat. There was a "command post" truck which was wired for every possible electronic com device known and Steve White showed some wood over that. The Boy Scouts had a "10 essentials" display. And GCSAR was there, dispensing information.
|99- 44||7- 11- 99||Swimmers in River above Big Bend|
|Paged out as a floundering
person in the river with a lifejacket on, milepost 8.5. Apparently, he was swimming along
in the river and got stuck in an eddy and was flailing trying to get out.
Dr. Sheer grabbed a flotation device, swam across the river and helped this individual to safety.
Comments: At 6,000 cfs, it takes 20 minutes to run our boat with 4 people from Moab boat dock to Big Bend. Add to that the response time from home to shed to boat dock.
Responders: Rex, Jeff, Sam, Nancy, Frank, Jennie, Lee, Bego and Alicia
|Alpha Rho sorority gave us some money.
They would like one of us to speak at their meeting.
Training: Tracking by Sgt. Kent Green
The "Y" formation for tracking: flankers, tracker, controller.
-- Essential skills required: Physical fitness, visual acuity (not color blind, has depth perception and peripheral vision) and PATIENCE.
-- The Rules of Tracking: 1) Correctly identify the tracks you wish to follow. 2) Mark and record grid reference of the start point. 3) Never walk on top of ground spoor (sign). 4) Never overshoot the last known spoor. 5) When following aerial spoor seek confirmatory evidence. 6) Always know exactly where you are. 7) Always keep in visual contact with other team members. 8) Always try to anticipate what your quarry will do. 9) Never forget rule 4.
|99- 45||7- 15- 99||Urban Flooding and Sandbag Patrol|
|It rained cats, dogs and a
few tuna all over the region and one storm cell settled in right over town just after
dark. Mill Creek flooded, washing out part of the Parkway Project (as you would expect
since part of it was built right in the stream bed). Much mud came sloshing down out of
the surrounding hills, oozing around all the city streets. Incident resolution: Rain
Comments: On a recent trip over to Goblin Valley, we passed miles of flood damaged landscape. The major washes were completely redone and the guk and muk came well up over Hwy 24 in several places. There are still huge lakes and mud flats. A LOT of water came down out there.
Responders: Sam responded to the Fire Station to help sandbag.
"We have enuff gun control. What we need is idiot control."
|GCSAR Picnic 7- 22- 99|
|That's what it was. Thank you to everyone for putting it on.|
|NPS Technical Rescue: Mechanical Advantage in Raising Systems|
|It was a day as labeled: Mechanical
Advantage in the 3:1 and 4:1 configurations, theoretical and actual, the friction
component and the anchor systems these rigs are attached to, such as the load distributing
and cordelets. Very Fun.
Theoretical Mechanics: Colin Smith, Gary Physics Haynes, Bego Bowlines and Frank Eights
Actual Mechanics: Rex and John F from GCSAR. A dozen from the NPS including A220-ster.
|A Superior K-9 unit|
|The Baltimore Police Department, famous
for its superior K-9 unit, was somewhat taken back by this recent incident.
Returning home from work, a blonde was shocked to find her house ransacked and burglarized. She telephoned the police at once and reported the crime. The police dispatcher broadcast the call on the channels and a K-9 unit patrolling nearby was the first to respond.
As the K-9 officer approached the house with his dog on a leash the woman ran out on the porch, shuddered at the sight of the cop and his dog, then sat down on the steps put her face in her hands and moaned, "I come home and find my possessions stolen and my house ransacked. I call the police for help, and what do they do? They send me a BLIND policeman!"
|The Commander says... YOU might want to read this:|
|Filling out Incident Reports: As OIC, you do not get credit for responding until the highlighted areas of the Incident Report are filled in. It's called "finishing your job."|
|99- 46||7- 31- 99||Biker Thud||SRBT- Practice Loop|
|We readied the Ranger with
the Stokes Litter to go. Again, the subject walked out to the parking lot.
Comments: It's uncanny how many bikers fall down, summon help and then walk out.
Responders: Kris, Sam, Josh, Lee, Dean, Jeff
"Water is Life- why waste it on black asphalt."
From a letter to the editor in the Times Independent.
|NPS Map, Compass, GPS training.|
|Covered the basics of map and compass
use, taking compass bearings, wagon wheel exercise, declination, triangulation, types of
maps, symbols, contour intervals, map coordinate systems and an overview of GPS units.
Orienteers: Lee Junge from GCSAR. Ten from NPSville.
|99- 47||8- 4- 99||Dog Rimrocked||Flat Pass- Hidden Valley|
|Dog removed from ledge. Dog
ran home. Everyone went home.
Responders: REX, Sam, Dave, Frank, Jeff, Dave M.
|99- 48||8- 4- 99||Fall from Horse- Kicked by same Horse||Hidden Valley|
|Subject was packaged (a
weird phrase isn't it?) and brought out on the Polaris Ranger to the waiting Ambulance.
Responders: Frank, Sam, Rex, Dave, Jeff
|99- 49||8- 6 and 7- 99||Lost Biker||Porcupine Rim|
We were paged at about 20:35 on 8/6 to search for a young mountain biker overdue from the Porcupine Rim trail. He had been between two groups of his Salt Lake area LDS church group on the trail. They returned. He didn't. Three ATVs were sent in from the tanks and one 2TRussell was sent up the singletrack from the Hwy 128 side. We were also concerned about two members of his party who had hiked up the singletrack earlier...probably, we figured, unprepared for after dark hiking. We located his friends, but were unable to locate the missing party that night. The ATVs covered the entire trail to the head of the singletrack...Russell walked up past the singletrack connection. We called out John Keys and his aircraft early the next morning and almost immediately received a report of a stranded hiker on the rim of Negro Bill Canyon from someone at Big Bend. The ATVs were being sent out from the tanks again...and two Matts, who had been ready to hike the singletrack, were diverted up Negro Bill Canyon.
The aircraft made numerous passes over the missing, now found, person to guide the hikers. The Matts were able to make voice contact and after some route-finding exercises, located a route up onto the rim. (There's a "29" section marker at the mouth of the notch on USGS topo maps.) They had lunch with our searchee and then hiked back out to the mouth of Negro Bill with him. He had apparently gotten off on the Coffee Pot Rock spur, and when the road stopped, he didn't.
Comments: It is probably not a wise idea to allow non-SAR hikers, family, friends, etc., to go searching unless we are certain they are prepared and competent. Even then, they should be accompanied by at least one SARite. The two hikers in this instance had only one flashlight between them...but we discovered later that they at least had a set of spare batteries. We didn't ask about bulbs.
Responders: Frank , Sam, Rex, Josh, Dave, Jimmy N., Dan, Jeff, Russell, Matt Moo, Matt Hop
|"As riots go, it was a very
friendly riot." - A Woodstock 99 rioteer, after arson, property destruction,
looting, rape, cops taking pix of naked girls..., 7 injured, 7 arrested.
"We'll check with our attorneys." - Office of Oklahoma Governor, responding to a request that Aug 8th be declared "National Admit You're Happy Day."
"They heard no noise... They saw a wall of black water coming on them and that's it." - A doctor who treated 6 survivors of a deadly canyoneering accident in Switzerland last week, describing what they remembered of the rain-swollen Saxteen River before it swallowed 19 tourists.
|8- 10- 99|
|While unloading his film equipment truck
at the top of Long Canyon, Dave Peck, of Salt Lake City, had his left eye torn right out
of his head by a flying bungie cord. Jennie Massie tended to Dave while Bego coordinated
the Air Life flight. Bummer. Several of us have worked film with Dave for a decade now.
Comments: Air Life likes National Law Enforcement radio frequency: 155.475. I used my 40 watt power booster on my hand radio to reach Air Life earlier in their flight. The pilot was glad the coordinates given came from a GPS. He said he gets rather bogus coordinates too often.
There is a Country Line Dance called "Bad Frog, No Princess." Ring any bells???
|GCSAR Training- 8- 10- 99|
|An interesting mix of not enuff leadership up front (I didn't leave a clear enuff picture of what I wanted) and not enuff leadership by those who were there. That, in itself, is instructive and can be labeled thusly: "The Problems of Leadership Vacuums and How To Fill Them When They Occur." I'll preview what I expect better next time. And if I'm not there, do something.|
|99- 50||8- 13- 99||Rescue of Climber with broken leg|
A crumbling handhold led to a possible tib-fib fracture for a 29-year-old West Virginia man on a guided technical climb in the Ice Cream Parlor area of Kane Creek. Jonathan Cardy was on the second pitch of the climb when the handhold crumbled. He suffered the injury (an obvious deformity) when he did a pendulum into an adjacent wall.
He was lowered to the ground by his guide, Tom Gilge of Climb Moab Inc., who was top-belaying him with a grigri. The "ground" was still at the top of a steep talus, so GCSAR was paged at about 11:30 a.m. to the report of a fallen climber that "the ambulance could drive right up to."
We packaged Cardy in the litter and carried him down the steep and difficult trail to the ambulance. Had the trail been any steeper or more difficult, a belayed scree evac would have been necessary.
Responders: Jeff, Sam, Frank, Nancy, Kent, Steves White and Brownell.
|8- 15- 99 Dog stuck in crack at Moonflower Canyon.|
|2T21 saves the dog. Gary on the way with a jackhammer and Jeff on the way with a cold chisel.|
|99- 51||8- 12- 99||Warner Lake hiker|
A 72-year-old Moab man was reported overdue from a hike in the Warner Lake area at about 23:15 on the night the Perseid meteor shower peaked. His plans were to hike a new Forest Service road closure in the area to gain insight for his testimony at a hearing regarding the closure.
Two dog teams were sent out...one from the missing person's vehicle, and the other from farther out his intended route. He was located at 4:55 a.m. near the end of the road closure a mile or so south of Warner Lake. He had become trapped by darkness, and fallen a few times while bushwhacking, but was in reasonably good shape. At first light, he hiked back out with members of Search and Rescue.
Responders: Frank, Kent, Sam, Lee, Nancy
|Warning - Visitors!!! -- Ribbit, ribbit.. Bluoaghhhhh!|
Don't step on crypto or the innocent looking, but hatefully dreaded Southwestern
Midget Faded Horned Puke Frog (micrus hornis projectus).
|99-52||8- 15- 99||Overdue Bikers||Gemini Trail|
|Oh, but it wasn't the Gemini
Trail. The Mom dropped of the dad and daughter off on the dirt road just after the oil
well on Hwy 313, one road short of the Gemini Trail. Dad and daughter biked and hiked
their bikes around quite a bit, even up to Arth's Rim. Eventually, they found the road
down thru Arth's Pasture to the Gemini Road. Getting dark. Running out of water. And
Kimberly, age 11, was running out of steam, walking her bike up all hills. But she was a
trooper, hopping out of Dan's jeep in a pretty good mood.
The Mom called GCSAR after a couple of hours of waiting. We had mobilized out to the beginning of our ATV effort when Dan Mick radioed that he had found the subjects. Dan was at a Marlboro camp up by the Gooney Bird in Little Canyon and had started home when he came upon our subjects. He stopped, not knowing they were subjects or that the rest of us were out looking.
Comments: It's probably a good thing things didn't happen faster or sooner cuz these two would have been up in Arth's Rim country which was not the primary search area altho it was definitely in the secondary search area. Had they been "stuck" up on Arth's Rim, it would have taken us quite awhile to find them.
Responders: Lee, Jim G., Josh the Biker, Rex, Sam, Bego, Dan
|99-427 - Glen Canyon NRA (UT) - Rock Slide with Fatality on San Juan River|
|A four-member fisheries crew from the Moab Field Office of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources was camped at mile 57.7 on the San Juan River on the evening of July 29th when a thunderstorm passed through the area with heavy winds and rain. Michael Arra, 41, entered his tent to keep it from blowing away. Co-workers saw numerous waterfalls in the area after the thunderstorm passed. At 8:50 p.m., a rock slide landed on Arra's tent and a boulder struck his head, inflicting a fatal injury. Two members of the crew traveled downstream to the Clay Hills pullout to report the incident; the remaining crew member was evacuated by helicopter the following morning. Arra's body was flown out by helicopter to the incident CP at Gooseneck State Park. There have been two other near-miss rock slides this year following thunderstorms. On August 2nd, rangers Karyl Yeston (ARCH) and Marc Yeston (CANY) held a CISD session in Moab for the three employees who witnessed the incident and coordinated another session for other co-workers. [Jim Houseman]|
|99- 53||8- 22- 99||Just checking||Jeepers on Steel Bender|
|We have a couple in their
80s, accompanied by a 50-something daughter...running low on water in an overheating jeep
on the Steelbender Trail. Call came in via cell phone to ex-SARite Tom Pierce's wife, who
is a friend. Basically, it's a welfare check. Sam and Jennie headed in from the south end
of the trail on ATVs.
Responders: Sam and Jennie
|Best lightning practices|
|Lightning storms occur every summer...
If you were out recreating would you know what to do to keep safe during a lightning
storm? What about lightning safety at home? Here are a few tips from Richard Kithil,
American Lightning Protection, INC., on what to do if you are caught in a thunderstorm.
The following are only guidelines as lightning can be very inconsistent.
Know what to do in a thunderstorm:
* Take cover indoors when possible.
* Get out of aluminum frames of doorways and windows.
* Avoid trees. Lightning often hits trees, travels down the trunk and may explode the bark. The charge then spreads out on the ground. * Go to a low lying area; brush is better than trees because it has "disbursed streamers" which don't act as a specific lightning rod. Get off the ridge, peak, roof or tower.
* Get off machinery; turn off machinery (a gas engine is less attractive than an electric engine.)
* Take cover in a metal-topped vehicle when it's not possible to go inside a building. Do not touch any metal parts of the vehicle. The rubber tires do not provide protection from lightning (nor do rubber-soled shoes.)
* Turn off your electronic devices (radios, microwaves, televisions) and avoid actions that would generate static.
* Use surge protection on electrical devices. If you are at home during a lightning storm avoid using a telephone and don't use any electrical appliance. Do not take a bath or shower. Turn off your television and if you have a satellite dish turn off your receiver.
* Carry a 4-foot square of polyethylene in your pack to whip out and stand on as an insulator (while assuming the next position . . .)
* Make your body a single point ground by putting your ankles and knees together and then crouching down. This posture lessens your chances of being a lightning rod or of having a charge enter one foot from the ground, travel through your vital organs, and then exiting through your other foot.Another suggested position is to drop to your knees and bend forward, putting your hands on your knees. Do not lie flat on the ground because electrical current from a strike can easily travel through your vital organs this way, too.
* Get away from each other. This will lessen the draw as a target.
* Get away from rocks and boulder fields. If you are hiking or camping, get off the rocks. Lightning likes to travel through the route of least resistance, and water (as in trees and our "70% water" bodies) is a great conductor from the ground to the sky.) Rocks don't hold much water, so your body would be the conductor.
* Aluminum and fiberglass poles will conduct electricity (keep in mind for skiing, tent camping, leaning on fences, fishing). Carbon fiber is better. Stay away from metal objects and tall objects such as telephone poles, light standards and antennas.
* If you are in the water, count to ten between a lightning strike and the thunder; if you get to ten or less, get out of the water and go to safety immediately. Remember, water is a perfect conductor. A ten count means that the lightning is 2 miles away. (4-5 seconds per mile)
* If your hair stands on end, immediately take safety action. A lightning strike could be eminent. You are charged up and ready to go; a perfect target.
* Get rid of the metal objects. Your radio, wheel chair, the baseball cap (with the metal rivet around the hole at the top,) your keys and knife. (If you have screws in your legs. . . sorry.)
* If on a horse, get off. Separate. The horse may have metal shoes, bit, and rigging in the saddle. (If the storm is a ways off, unsaddle your friend and put him in the brush.)
* Lightning can happen in snow, rain, hail, dust; many kinds of turbulence where static occurs; then it looks for a good target of least resistance to discharge this voltage.
* Make certain you stay under cover until the danger has passed. Just because the rain may have stopped does not mean that the lightning is over.
* Err on the side of being very conservative. The best advice of all is to keep calm and keep low. Remember, weather conditions change rapidly and are often unpredictable.
[From somewhere on the Internet]
|"Silt Happens" Back Issues|
|#99-3 (May-June 99) --
Cataract High; Web rescue; Disaster Brothers; Search Training; Short Haul at altitude;
Leadership; Rescue: Who pays
#99-2 (Mar-Apr 99) -- River Peak Flow Forecast; Arches Rock Rescue; Lift Evacuation Team; Huge Fund Raiser; Thanks Brad; Knotcraft
#99-1 (Jan-Feb 99) -- Adventure; "Too Short"; Gary Haynes; Evac Team Paid Now
#98-6 (Nov-Dec 98) -- Thanks Yous;
Tramway and rescue plans; Cellular Phonefinder; Practice Safe Response; Pipeline Go BOOM
#97-6 (Nov-Dec 97)