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Injured Hiker Extricated From Top Of Lower Yosemite Fall
#31349 05/12/13 08:12 PM
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Got this from a Yosemite Forum:

Injured Hiker Extricated From Top Of Lower Yosemite Fall


On the afternoon of Saturday, April 27th, the park communication center received a transfer call from an injured hiker from the California Highway Patrol. Fernando Celis reported that he was at the base of a waterfall in between some boulders and that he was badly injured and couldn't walk. Celis couldn't identify his location, say how he'd become injured, or advise the location of the group he was with. Rangers were dispatched to the bases of Lower Yosemite, Bridalveil, Nevada and Cascade Falls to search for Celis and other rangers were placed on standby to search other park waterfalls if necessary. Rangers found Celis' hiking group within about an hour and learned that they'd hiked the Upper Yosemite Fall Trail and that Celis had become separated from the group along the trail between the bottom of Upper Yosemite Fall and top of Lower Yosemite Fall. Hasty teams were sent up the Upper Yosemite Fall Trail and to Sunnyside Bench (on the opposite side of the river) to search for Celis. A helicopter was ordered as a search platform and for a possible hoist mission. California Highway Patrol helicopter H-20 from Auburn, California, arrived around 5 p.m. and began an air reconnaissance of the area. The crew spotted Celis on a ledge near the top of Lower Yosemite Fall after about an hour and successively inserted rangers Aaron Smith and David Pope by hoist to the ledge. The rangers packaged Celis in a KED and Stokes litter. He was hoisted from the ledge, transferred to a medical helicopter at Ahwahnee Meadow, and flown to Doctor's Medical Center in Modesto. H-20 then hoisted the rangers from the ledge. Yosemite Valley District Ranger Jack Hoeflich served as the incident commander.

Re: Injured Hiker Extricated From Top Of Lower Yosemite Fall
RenoFrank #31350 05/12/13 08:40 PM
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Every time I read one of these incident reports, a query comes to mind: Are you automatically screwed about privacy the minute you are rescued? (read: is there any way that a victim/patient has control over having his/her name and the potentially stupid thing he/she did released to the public?<nothing against you, frank, for posting it, rather, I am curious about the original release of the name>



The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.
Re: Injured Hiker Extricated From Top Of Lower Yosemite Fall
Bee #31355 05/13/13 12:00 AM
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I am hopeful that the injured party needs to authorize the publishing of his name. But I have no idea what the actual protocol is.

Re: Injured Hiker Extricated From Top Of Lower Yosemite Fall
Steve C #31358 05/13/13 06:04 AM
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I think once their name is part of a public report, it's fair game. The exception is a juvenile. However, their injuries shouldn't be reported as part of any official release without their permission (I think).

It's a good question, though, about what the agency should do in a press release. I'll check.

I'm winging it here but think that's close.

g.


None of the views expressed here in any way represent those of the unidentified agency that I work for or, often, reality. It's just me, fired up by coffee and powerful prose.
Re: Injured Hiker Extricated From Top Of Lower Yosemite Fall
George #31367 05/13/13 09:45 AM
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You're correct, George. Once a police (local PD, Sheriff, CHP) incident report has been done, most of the information contained therein is public, with certain exceptions, such as names of minor persons. The California law also applies to incidents within the national parks.

It is not unusual to see names of victim(s) and the reporting party in news media reports of SAR operations. However, I believe it is the responsibility of law enforcement officials to release that information when asked. I recall, while on Inyo SAR, that we would often be approached by local media reporters, fishing for information. It was our policy to direct them to the Inyo Sheriff representative, and not offer them "insider" information.

Here is the straight scoop on the California law:

http://www.lapdonline.org/i_want_to_know/content_basic_view/36329


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