New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents throughout New York State. Working with other state agencies, local emergency response organizations and volunteer search and rescue groups, Forest Rangers locate and extract lost, injured or distressed people.
What follows is a report, prepared by DEC, of recent missions carried out by Forest Rangers.
Town of Hunter
Wilderness Rescue: On December 10th at 5:15 pm, Forest Rangers Bink, Bowler, and Fox responded to Hurricane Ledge after a report of two lost hikers. The subjects from the Bronx started hiking up from the Steenburgh Road trailhead at 1 p.m., but lost the trail. Rangers located the subjects by 8 pm. The hikers were not injured, but cold. Rangers provided food, warm liquids, and dry layers of clothing and helped the pair back to the trailhead. The 29- and 30-year-old subjects declined medical assistance. Resources were clear at 9:30 pm.
Town of Hope
Motor Vehicle Accident Rescue: On December 10th at 8:30 am, Forest Rangers Geyer and Nally responded to a motor vehicle accident on Hope Falls Road. The vehicle slid down an embankment with four people inside it. Rangers helped New York State Police free a five-year-old stuck in the car, stabilizing his head until a neck brace was applied and the patient was placed on a backboard. All four subjects were transferred to EMS by 10:30 am.
Town of Forestport
Wilderness Recovery: On December 9th at 3:19 pm, Environmental Conservation Police Officer (ECO) Tabor notified Ray Brook Dispatch that Oneida County requested Forest Ranger assistance with the search for a missing subject. The 55-year-old’s ATV was found rolled over in a stream, but the subject was not located. New York State Police led the search efforts with an underwater recovery team and drone operators. Ranger Lieutenant Hoag and Rangers Murphy and Piersma responded with ECOs Noyes and Tabor and the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department. After a full day of searching, rescue crews continued the following day. On December 10th at 10:30 pm, a State Police drone operator located the victim deceased approximately one-half mile downstream from where the ATV was found.
Bear Mountain State Park
Wilderness Rescue: On December 10th at 12 pm, Central Dispatch requested Forest Ranger assistance with an injured hiker at Bear Mountain State Park. Rangers Cowart, O’Connell, Russo, and Sweeney hiked in to the location. Park Rangers and Park Police were with the 42-year-old from Staten Island, who had an ankle injury. Rangers assisted with the carry-out of the subject using a wheeled litter. The subject was then taken by UTV to an ambulance at Seven Lakes Road and resources were clear at 3:20 pm.
Read past Forest Ranger search and rescue reports here.