Injured logger update
December 23, 2013
Wednesday December 11th at approx 14:18 McKenzie Fire/Rescue was dispatched for a logging accident approx 5 miles up Quartz Creek Rd. The dispatch information stated we were responding for a male patient who had fallen during a logging operation who possibly had a broken leg. First McKenzie crews arrived at Quartz Creek and were lead to the incident location by a member of the logging crew, once they arrived at the location two crew members crossed the creek and hiked up the hill to find a male with a possible broken ankle and broken tibia. Medic 16 from Springfield fire arrived several minutes after the first arriving McKenzie Fire unit, once they made contact with the incident commander Captain Sherwood they quickly realized that it was going to take more help and a lot of time to get the patient down the hillside. Additional McKenzie personnel, Springfield Fire's technical rescue team and Lane County Search and Rescue were all asked to respond to the incident. Once the additional crew arrived they began the task of getting the injured logger off the steep hillside while trying to keep his pain under control. This was completed by placing the patient in a stokes basket and using a rope system to lower the patient a little at a time. The Lane County Search and Rescue team was asked to set up a high line rope system which would be used to elevate and transport the patient while still in the stokes basket across the creek. Once the patient was across the creek and back on the road crews transported him in the back of a McKenzie unit down to the waiting ambulance. The patient was then transported code 3 to Riverbend Hospital for further evaluation. With night fall coming soon there was an attempt to get the National Guard helicopter or the Coast Guard helicopter to assist with lifting the patient but the request was denied.
Each year we may respond to 1-3 logging incidents but they don't usually require this much involvement and personnel to get the patient ready for transport. Due to the icy conditions, cold weather, thick brush, fallen trees, darkness and steep slope it required in total ### people to help transport the patient off the hill and into the ambulance. In order to safely get the patient off the mountain the incident required a coordinated effort from several Lane County agencies. McKenzie Fire/Rescue, Springfield Fire and Life Safety medic unit and rescue team, Lane County Search and Rescue and the logging crew.
McKenzie River Reflections