Intoxicated teen plunges down North Van ravine
Published Saturday, July 13, 2019 12:32PM PDT
Last Updated Sunday, July 14, 2019 11:44AM PDT
A passerby heard a teenager scream for help after falling down a steep embankment in North Vancouver, according to firefighters.
Emergency crews were called to the ravine, which is located roughly 500 metres behind the Delbrook Community Recreation Centre, shortly after 9 p.m. Friday.
North Vancouver RCMP said the 17-year-old was with a group of friends and it's believed they had been drinking.
"He was walking near the edge of the cliff and suddenly he went over," Sgt. Peter DeVries told CTV News. "There was some indication that there was alcohol involved, but the extent is unclear."
Firefighters were called to rescue the teen, who had plummeted roughly 35 to 55 feet down the embankment in the ravine.
Assistant Chief of Operations David Dales called the technical rope rescue "challenging," as crews dealt with steep terrain and nightfall.
"The ravine had a lot of rock fall, so our firefighters conducting the rescue were hit with some rock fall. And the actual raising of the patient was quite challenging," Dales explained.
RCMP said the teen did not have any injuries.
The president of the British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters' Association said he was concerned when he heard firefighters were put in a potentially unsafe situation because someone had been drinking.
"The individual was at a level of intoxication that didn't allow him to have his full capacities to make the trek out on his own," said Gord Ditchburn. "I'm troubled because we have individuals putting themselves in scenarios and predicaments like that, which causes our emergency services, to come out…in not great conditions."
He said firefighters tend to see a spike in these kinds of calls in the summer months and reminds people to enjoy the outdoors responsibly.
"Remember the time of day, remember that they've got to get out of where they are and to leave themselves in a fully functioning capacity where they can get back out," Ditchburn said.