(Update: Correcting woman’s condition; comments from Black Butte Ranch police chief)
Was pulled to shore by kayaking companion; bystanders, police performed CPR until medics arrived
REDMOND, Ore. (KTVZ) – One of two kayakers was critically injured after they were tossed in the Deschutes River when their kayak overturned at Cine Falls State Scenic Viewpoint west of Redmond late Tuesday afternoon, authorities said.
First responders were dispatched around 4:20 p.m. to a water rescue after a kayak overturned in the river, and the man and woman who were in it struggled to get out of the water, Oregon State Police said.
The male kayaker was able to pull his companion to shore, troopers said, but not before she had gone underwater for a time and lost consciousness.
Bystanders who were on the shore began CPR and called 911, OSP said.
Black Butte Ranch Police Chief Jason VanMeter and an OSP trooper who were in the area arrived within minutes, they said, taking over resuscitation efforts.
Redmond Fire & Rescue medics soon arrived and took the woman to St. Charles Redmond, OSP said, adding that she remained in critical condition Wednesday.
VanMeter said Wednesday the trooper’s car was behind his on Highway 126 when they heard the call, so they both did a U-turn and were “there within 35, 40 seconds.”
“The bystanders flagged us down, got us to the patient, where they’d been doing CPR,” he told NewsChannel 21. “They were doing everything they could have possibly done — giving great directions to where they were. The chain from the people who reported it to the call-taker to the dispatcher was flawless.”
VanMeter said he and the trooper traded off performing CPR on the woman until Redmond Fire medics arrived, put her in the ambulance and continued efforts to revive her.
The police chief said both kayakers had been wearing life vests.
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