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Cormorant helicopter rescues injured driver

Vehicle rolled over in remote area

A 30-year-old man was critically injured when a vehicle overturned on a forestry road in a remote area on Saturday, April 13.

Two men were travelling in a Jeep TJ along rough trails near Khartoum Lake when a tire lost traction and slipped off the trail, according to a Powell River RCMP media release. The vehicle slid off the road and rolled down a steep embankment, ejecting the driver and passenger. It stopped approximately 50 metres down the embankment.

The 30-year-old driver suffered critical injuries. The passenger, who suffered minor injuries, performed first aid on the driver. The passenger then had to leave the driver to call for help, as there was no cell coverage in the area.

Police responded at approximately 5:40 pm. BC Ambulance Service also attended the scene. Powell River Search and Rescue were requested to attend the scene as well because of their high angle rescue capabilities.

However, emergency personnel determined the rescue would be difficult to perform because of the extreme terrain. RCAF (Royal Canadian Air Force) 19 Wing from Comox on Vancouver Island was called in to assist. The Rescue Coordination Centre in Victoria coordinated the rescue.

A Cormorant helicopter with a search and rescue crew and technicians performed a basket rescue and airlifted the injured driver to the hovering helicopter.

The driver was transferred to a waiting BC Ambulance helicopter at the Powell River airport and was flown directly to Vancouver General Hospital, where he remained in critical condition as of Monday morning.

Members of the Powell River RCMP are investigating the incident, including the local collision analyst. Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the incident. The investigation is ongoing.