A search and rescue team from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Washington, rescued two hikers — including a man suffering a head injury — from the Alpine Lakes Wilderness this month.
The first rescue involved a 25-year-old woman who became sick while hiking Waptus Lake at an elevation of approximately 3,200 feet on Aug. 21.
“The SAR crew inserted two medical technicians about 100 yards from the hiking party’s location then landed to conserve fuel,” the Navy said in a news release. “Upon reaching the patient, the rescue personnel assessed and prepared the ailing victim to receive fluids.”
The team hoisted the woman from her location and transported her to Harborview Medical Center for additional treatment.
The team also assisted in rescuing a 65-year-old man in the Alpine Lakes area who encountered a head injury on the same day.
“After finding a suitable location to minimize any rotor downwash during the rescue, the SAR team inserted two rescue personnel about 200 yards away from the injured hiker,” the Navy said in a release. “The injured man and rescue team were hoisted aboard the SAR aircraft around 8:40 that evening and flew directly to Harborview where they landed about a half hour later.”
Last month, Whidbey Island’s search and rescue team helped save a hiker suffering from a broken ankle on the southern rim of Mount St. Helens.
Altogether, the team has completed 28 missions this year, including one medical evacuation, four searches and 23 rescues.
Naval Air Station Whidbey Island’s search and rescue team operates three MH-60S helicopters.