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The City of Portland, Oregon

Fire & Rescue

Always Ready, Always There

Phone: 503-823-3700

Fax: 503-823-3710

55 SW Ash Street, Portland, OR 97204

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NEWS RELEASE 07/24/10: Portland Fire & Rescue Pulls Man from Willamette River


July 24, 2010

2:48 PM

On July 24, 2010 at approximately 1:00 p.m., Portland Fire & Rescue responded to reports of a man struggling in the Willamette River near the Steel Bridge.  The man was located by a kayaker and the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office Marine Patrol.  The victim was pulled from the water By Portland Fire & Rescue.  The victim was conscious and speaking as he was transported to a waiting ambulance.

An alert kayaker heard someone calling for help while on the river near the Steel Bridge.  The woman investigated further and found a man clinging to the pilings beneath the Bridge.  The kayaker called 9-1-1 and rescuers responded.

The MCSO Marine Patrol boat was the first on scene and was able to throw the man a life jacket.  Within minutes Portland Fire and Rescue's "Rescue Craft 1" (a personal water craft) arrived and a rescue swimmer pulled the man from beneath the bridge.  The man was transferred to a waiting ambulance for further treatment.

Reports indicate that the man was conscious and talking when he was pulled from the river.  The patient was reportedly very cold and was unable or unwilling to tell responders how he came to be in the river.  The man stated that his legs had begun cramping badly in the cold water.  The patient was transported by AMR to OHSU.

Fast Facts:

  • Dispatched- Approx. 1:08pm
  • Recalled- Approx. 1:30pm

Portland Fire & Rescue Response

  • 1 Engine
  • 1 Rescue Craft
  • 1 Fire Boat
  • 1 Chief Officer

Water Safety Reminders:

  1. River temperatures are still very cold (around 60 degrees).
  2. Life jackets are strongly recommended when near the water.
  3. If you find someone struggling in the water "Throw Don't Go" and call 9-1-1.*

* Water rescue by untrained individuals should only be attempted from the safety of shore. Throw a life preserver or reach out with a stick or rope.


  Portland Fire & Rescue We Respond: Always Ready, Always There

  July 24, 2010


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