The page came out at 1420 with reports of a 78 year old male who fell off the Lower Sam trail. We were able to make cell phone contact with the victim and determine he was uninjured and in a safe location. He had water and a GPS and was able to relay his coordinates and altitude. He was informed we had a crew responding and to hold in that location as it would take a little while before we got to him.
After ascending the Lower Sam Trail, the team made voice and then visual contact with the victim. He was about 1 mile up the trail, and had fallen approximately 40 feet down the slope.
After establishing a good anchor point, a team member made his way down to the victim and did a quick assessment, after which he was placed in a harness and helmet. Once the victim was safe on the trail, another assessment was performed. Once it was determined he was uninjured, we slowly walked him down the trail.
After arrival at the trailhead with the victim, we performed a head to toe assessment including mental status. The victim did well and besides some abrasions and minor lacerations was in good condition.
This victim was better prepared than most, having in his possession a cell phone, GPS and a supply of water. Many victims have nothing more in their possession than the clothes on their back. Regardless of the length of your outing, always head out prepared. As an added safety step, take a few minutes to fill out the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Search and Rescue – Hiking Plan.