ST. PAUL, Minn. - Already taxed from a dangerous rescue-recovery mission at Lilydale Park Wednesday and Thursday, St. Paul first responders had to gear up again and save a man who fell off a bluff on the Mississippi River.
St. Paul Fire Department First District Chief Stacy Hohertz tells KARE 11 the man was walking along the bluff just off Mississippi River Boulevard and Hartford when he fell off and tumbled down the steep embankment.
Hohertz says the victim, believed to be in his 20s, plunged 80 to 100 feet and suffered back and hip injuries but was conscious and alert. He ended up in a spot that was extremely difficult for rescue crews to reach due to the grade of the bank and extremely thick trees and foliage.
Rescuers used chainsaws to cut back the canopy of trees so the State Patrol helicopter could drop a basket down onto the river bank and lift the man out.
The operation is similar to the one performed Wednesday at Lilydale Park after four 4th graders from Peter Hobart Elementary School in St. Louis Park plunged off a washed out path and into a collapse zone. Two of those students died, while two others were airlifted from the scene.
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