An unidentified 18-year-old girl suffered moderate injuries Sunday afternoon at the South Yuba River after plunging 10 feet and crashing into rocks that flank the waterway.
The girl suffered the fall at Mother’s Beach near Purdon Crossing at about 4 p.m.
Amaru Hafiz, an eyewitness to the incident, said the young woman was trying to jump off rocks into the river and slipped. After striking a rock, she fell into the river.
Another eyewitness, Dave LaRash, said the girl suffered injuries to her neck area, including a broken clavicle, but was able to wiggle her toes and fingers.
It was a busy afternoon for area firefighters, as North San Juan and Penn Valley personnel had just been dispatched to a fall at Bridgeport.
Firefighters were called out just before 4 p.m. for a report of an infant who had sustained a 6-foot fall, said North San Juan Fire Engineer Christoffer Montelius.
They had just started patient care and were preparing to have the child flown out when the call came reporting the accident at Purdon Crossing.
Two EMTs from North San Juan responded in their personal vehicles and were first on the scene, Montelius said.
Nevada County Consolidated firefighters hiked in a crew with a “Bauman bag” for a helicopter long-line hoist, Montelius said. Due to the remote location, a California Highway Patrol helicopter was used to hoist the patient out of the river canyon. Cal Fire also responded, according to Montelius.
“The importance of good teamwork between neighboring fire districts becomes very clear when multiple calls go out in one district for river rescues at two different river crossings,” he said.
The girl was transported to Sutter Roseville Medical Center with moderate injuries. Her condition was not known Monday.
Hafiz said the injury to the young female serves as a reminder of the necessity to be safe while recreating at the South Yuba River.
“My son has a new respect for the river,” he said.
Hafiz said the parking area in proximity to Purdon Crossing was congested and caused problems for paramedics attempting to reach the scene.
“People were parked halfway out on the road and were blocking the gate,” he said. “It’s just stupid.”
Hafiz questioned whether the $38 fine is enough of a deterrent for people who are creating such a public endangerment.
“It just gets so crazy on the weekend. I think I will stop going on Saturday and Sunday,” Hafiz said.
Last week, law enforcement officials announced they would be increasing patrols and enforcement of parking regulations at South Yuba River access points.
Edwards Crossing has seen an influx of visitors as a result of a paid parking program recently implemented at Bridgeport and the ongoing construction project at Purdon Crossing.
“Illegal parking is causing traffic congestion, increasing roadway danger, and is creating a public safety issue,” said Assistant County Executive Officer Alison Lehman. “The parking problem is so severe that fire trucks or emergency vehicles are unable to pass or would be delayed.”
To contact Staff Writer Matthew Renda, email firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-477-4239.