River Rescue

Dec. 23, 2021 — The quick actions of a resident of Rhododendron Drive may have saved a life on Wednesday afternoon, according to Coast Guard Station Siuslaw River Officer In Charge Jay Niles. The individual noticed what appeared to be a person floating in the Siuslaw River and contacted Station Siuslaw.

“Special thanks to Siuslaw Valley Fire & Rescue, Western Lane Ambulance District, & the City of Florence, Oregon - Government Police Department for their professional assistance today after our lifeboat crew recovered an individual who found themselves struggling to stay afloat in the frigid waters of the Siuslaw River. The subject was sighted by a residence on Rhododendron who thankfully called 911 and our Station directly. The quick action by the concerned citizen most likely was the link that saved a life,” Niles said. “The swift ebb current had carried the subject nearly 1/2 mile in just minutes. Our ready crew launched within minutes of notification and after a short transit recovered the subject and was met at the CG Station by SVFR & WLA who were able to continue lifesaving efforts . Without their quick response, the outcome may have been different!

Western Lane Ambulance District Chief of Operations Matt House was one of the first responders on the scene and helped transfer the unconscious woman to shore from the Coast Guard vessel while administering CPR.

House reports the individual was initially unresponsive but once on shore she soon started breathing and was able to open her eyes and acknowledge questions. The individual was then taken to Peace Health Peace Harbor Hospital where she was treated and stabilized.