River Incident Report #927021

Date of Incident: June 1, 1992
River: Colorado
Section of River: Cataract Canyon
Location on River: In Dark Canyon
Relative Flow: N/A
Gage Reading: N/A
Difficulty: N/A
Type of Incident: Jumping
Injuries: Fractured Pelvis and Vertebrae
Type of Trip: Commercial
Type of Boat: N/A

At 17:45 a 21 year old male was hiking in Dark Canyon with fellow passengers from a river trip. He decided to jump from a rock into a pool of cloudy water, and when he did, he landed on his rump in six inches of water. The young man had been warned about jumping into unknown bodies of water and afterwards accepted full responsibility for the accident. Response to his cries for help was immediate and EMT's in the group treated for shock and secured him to a backboard. Two hours were required to carry the victim a mile and a half to a camp at the mouth of Dark Canyon. Meanwhile, another boatman was dispatched to Hite to initiate a rescue. The Park Service Ranger at Hite contacted a medical helicopter at 20:30, and the patient was evacuated at 23:00. Officials in the hospital reported that the victim's injuries included a fractured pelvis and a compression fracture of one of the lumbar vertebrae.

In Retrospect
When you are anxious to start an adventure it may be difficult to absorb and respond to all of the advice in preliminary safety lectures. This accident was a consequence of a failure to do so.

Last updated: March 31, 2012

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