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Man airlifted to hospital following snowmobile accident


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The following is a news release from Fremont County Search & Rescue.

ISLAND PARK — Around 11:50 a.m. Saturday, Fremont County Sheriff’s dispatch received a 911 call for a snowmobile accident near the West End of Island Park reservoir. They stated a male was knocked unconscious during the accident and was drifting in and out of consciousness. The crash victim complained of upper leg pain, back pain, and of being really cold.

Two deputies and Island Park EMS responded with snowmobiles and their Med Sled. The paramedic asked dispatch to see if Life Flight was available to fly to Island Park. Unfortunately, they could only fly as far as Ashton due to thick clouds and fog. Air Idaho from West Yellowstone, MT and another helicopter from Ennis, MT were called, but because of inclement weather conditions neither were able to fly.

When the deputy made contact with the reporting party, he requested to have Fremont County Search & Rescue (FCSAR) respond with a rescue toboggan to transport the injured snowmobiler from the crash site to the Med Sled. Life Flight was unable to land at the Stake Center or North Fremont High School, so the landing zone (LZ) was set up alongside highway 20 south of Ashton.

FCSAR commander picked up the flight crew and transported them to Harriman State Park to assist with the injured individual. They reached the patient around 2:00 p.m. After his injuries were assessed, he was secured to the toboggan and transported from the crash site.

The weather cleared above Island Park Reservoir, and FCSAR asked dispatch to see if Life Flight was able to fly over Ashton Hill, Big Bend Ridge. It was still covered with clouds and the pilot stated he was unable to clear the top. The patient was transferred onto the Med Sled and transported back to Harriman State Park where Island Park Ambulance was waiting.

By the time everyone made to the ambulance, the weather had lifted allowing Life Flight to land at Harriman State Park. The patient was loaded onto the helicopter, the flight crew was reunited with the pilot, and they transported the injured snowmobiler to the hospital.

Island Park EMS, Fremont County Search & Rescue, and Fremont County Deputies cleared the staging area around 4:30 p.m.

The condition of the patient has not been released.