Bridge Rescue Saves Albany Resident

Albany Fire Dept.

On Thursday, July 11, 2019, at approximately 12:44 a.m., the Albany Police received a 911 emergency call from a citizen reporting a female screaming beneath the Bryant Way Bridge in the 800 block of SW Bryant Way.  The citizen reported a female was hanging on a sign beneath the bridge, over the Calapooia River.

At 12:51 a.m., Albany Police Department and Albany Fire Department responded to the scene. Albany police engaged the distraught female in conversation for approximately 1 hour while Albany Fire Department personnel conducted a technical rescue.  The distraught female, a 47-year old Albany resident, was hanging over the Calapooia River by two braided metal cables and a metal spillway sign.  The sign was suspended approximately 50-60 feet above the waterway.   A fall from this height could have been fatal due to low river levels and large rocks directly below her. 

Albany Fire’s Water Rescue Craft was deployed to the Willamette and Calapooia rivers while a technical rescue was launched from the Bryant Way Bridge.   One firefighter was lowered to the unidentified female where he was able to safely harness and secure her to his own rigging for a rescue pick off.  Both were then lifted to safety by Albany firefighters and police officers.

The female was medically evaluated on scene for injuries and interviewed by Albany Police for further investigation.  In total approximately 23 first responders assisted in this life saving rescue.  Albany Fire Truck 11 is equipped with technical rescue equipment and is frequently staffed with members of our specialized Technical Rescue Team.  Members undergo additional training in high angle rescue.