Climbers from B.C. and Alberta recovering in hospital after fall from Mount Rainier
Tuesday, September 3, 2013, 4:03 -
Dozens of search and rescue members on Washington state's Mount Rainier were deployed to rescue three Canadian climbers who fell into a crevasse.
Two of the three men who tumbled -- one from Surrey, B.C., and the other from Edmonton -- are in hospital in serious condition.
The climbers fell early Sunday morning into a crevasse on Emmons Glacier at about the 3,500-metre level on the 4,400 metre active volcano, said a news release from the U.S. National Park Service.
The men were on their way to the summit of the mountain.
The service said the incident was reported by another climbing team that happened to see the three fallen men at about 3:50 a.m. Sunday.
A crew of about 36 personnel worked on the rescue.
A helicopter pilot managed to drop a four-person rescue team to within about 30 metres of the accident scene.
The service said the injured men were extracted by a newly established short-haul helicopter system.
Susan Gregg of the Harborview Medical Center in Seattle said two of the men, aged 31, were transported there by helicopter on Sunday.
"Both are in our in the intensive care unit, but they are serious and improving and both conscious,'' she said in an interview.
The third man, whose injuries were less severe, was taken to another hospital.
The climbers' names have not been released.
More than 10,000 people attempt to climb Mount Rainier every year, but fewer than half that number actually reach the summit, according to statistics from the Park Service.