A hiker is lucky to be alive after falling down a gully in the centre of Kamloops and breaking his leg, which left him trapped for more than a day before a faint cry for help alerted people to his predicament.
Police were called at 4:15 p.m. on Wednesday (Aug. 31) for a reported scream heard coming from the Guerin Creek gully, which is located in Kamloops’ West End, between Chaparrel Place and Hudson’s Bay Trail, south of the intersection of Victoria Street West and Mission Flats Road.
Kamloops RCMP Cpl. Crystal Evelyn told KTW officers attended and heard a faint call for help from the basin of the creek, where a man was injured and unable to climb out.
Police then called in Kamloops Fire Rescue and firefighters performed a steep slope rescue.
The man, who is in his 30s, was taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Evelyn said the man said he had fallen and had been in the gully for more than a day.
The man had a broken femur, KFR Platoon Capt. Chris Pretula told KTW. Pretula said the man had slipped and fell down an embankment, but wasn’t sure how far down he plunged.
Assistant KFR Fire Chief Scott Karpiak said RCMP officers hiked in from the bottom of the gully to make contact with the patient and determined, due to the man’s injury and density and steepness of the terrain, he needed to be lifted out of the gully via rope rescue, rather than carried out.
Two KFR rope rescue teams were deployed and the man was lifted out of the gully in a basket stretcher before being handed him off to paramedics. Karpiak said KFR cleared the scene by 7 p.m.
The accident isn’t an uncommon one, Pretula said.
“Definitely on the trails around town, there’s been incidents for sure. Peterson Creek usually gets lots of them,” Pretula said.
“It’s a very upsetting situation for sure,” Karpiak said. “He’d certainly be uncomfortable and in a lot of pain. I’d say he’s very fortunate and lucky the residents did hear him.”
Karpiak said he does not know if the man had a cellphone with him.
He advised that people recreating in the city or outside of Kamloops — with or without cellphone — ensure they notify friends or family of where they are going and when they expect to return.