Maple Ridge Fire and Rescue were conducting training operations at Gold Creek Falls when a firefighter broke their leg. (Eileen Robinson photo - Special to The News)

Maple Ridge Fire and Rescue were conducting training operations at Gold Creek Falls when a firefighter broke their leg. (Eileen Robinson photo - Special to The News)

Firefighter suffers broken leg during swift water rescue practice in Golden Ears park

A training exercise at Maple Ridge waterfall on Wedesday results in mishap

A Maple Ridge Fire and Rescue swift water training exercise left a firefighter with a broken leg on Wednesday.

Fire Chief Howard Exner said the incident serves as a warning of how dangerous rivers can be, particularly during the freshet season, which is beginning.

Exner said his crews were training in Golden Ears Provincial Park, in the Lower Falls area of Gold Creek. It is an area from which emergency responders get numerous calls each year for swift water rescues. The firefighter, a veteran member, got his foot wedged between two boulders under water, and his leg was broken by the current.

“The energy of the river pushed him in the wrong direction, and broke his leg,” said Exner.

His co-workers were able to help the injured man to shore, and he was transported to a parking lot on a Polaris Ranger UTV equipped for litter carries. He was then taken to hospital by ambulance. The accident happened at about 11 a.m.

READ MORE: Ridge Meadows SAR uses helicopters to rescue pair of hikers in Golden Ears park

READ MORE: Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue aid woman stranded by waterfall

Exner said freshet, the annual spring melt, raises water levels and makes rivers more dangerous.

“This isn’t the time to be playing in the river,” he said. “If you don’t have a PFD (personal flotation device) you shouldn’t be within 10 feet of the river. And nor should your pet.”

His teams have rescued dogs stuck in local rivers in the past.

Exner said injuries in firefighter training are not unheard of.

“As with a lot of the calls first responders go to, there is an inherent risk.”


Have a story tip? Email: ncorbett@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

maple ridgeSearch and Rescue

Just Posted

The draw for May’s Shop Local & Win contest takes place June 4, 2021. (Special to The News)
Open your wallet close to home and win

Maple Ridge - Pitt Meadows Chamber of Commerce hosts shop local competition

Brian Malfesi and his partner Vincent Jourdenais have qualified for the Tokyo Olympics. (Special to The News)
Maple Ridge kayak racer qualifies for Tokyo Olympics

Malfesi is first B.C. sprint paddler to race for Team Canada at Olympics in 33 years

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick)
Chamber of commerce for Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows hosts Conservative leader

Erin O’Toole and MP Dalton part of online Zoom meeting on Monday

A photo of Telosky Stadium from the Maple Ridge Museum and Archives. (Special to The News)
Telosky Stadium opened in Haney on this day in 1950

Maple Ridge Museum and Archives marks special day in local sporting history

Transport 2050 is TransLink’s largest ever public engagement. (TransLink, Special to The News)
Last day to take TransLink’s planning survey

Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows residents can have a say in Transport 2050

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Bradley Priestap in an undated photo provided to the media some time in 2012 by the London Police Service.
Serial sex-offender acquitted of duct tape possession in B.C. provincial court

Ontario sex offender on long-term supervision order was found with one of many ‘rape kit’ items

Rich Coleman, who was responsible for the gaming file off and on from 2001 to 2013, was recalled after his initial testimony to the Cullen Commission last month. (Screenshot)
Coleman questioned over $460K transaction at River Rock during B.C. casinos inquiry

The longtime former Langley MLA was asked about 2011 interview on BC Almanac program

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Mandarin Garden in Abbotsford had two event tents set up for outdoor dining. One of the tents, valued at more than $5,000, was stolen early Friday morning (May 14). (Submitted photo)
UPDATE: Dining tent stolen from Abbotsford restaurant is located

Owner says it would have cost more than $5,000 to replace the rented event tent

Steven Shearer, <em>Untitled. </em>(Dennis Ha/Courtesy of Steven Shearer)
Vancouver photographer’s billboards taken down after complaints about being ‘disturbing’

‘Context is everything’ when it comes to understanding these images, says visual art professor Catherine Heard

Trina Hunt's remains were found in the Hope area on March 29. Her family is asking the public to think back to the weekend prior to when she went missing. (Photo courtesy of IHIT.)
Cousin of missing woman found in Hope says she won’t have closure until death is solved

Trina Hunt’s family urges Hope residents to check dashcam, photos to help find her killer

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Restrictions will lift once 75% of Canadians get 1 shot and 20% are fully immunized, feds say

Federal health officials are laying out their vision of what life could look like after most Canadians are vaccinated against COVID-19

Most Read