Terrace Search and Rescue (SAR) president Dwayne Sheppard arrives back on shore from a water-rescue training scenario in 2018. (Brittany Gervais photo)

‘Lucky to be alive’: Jet skier rescued after running out of fuel on northern B.C. river

A helicopter and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police were involved in the rescue

Terrace Search and Rescue (SAR) coordinated with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to rescue a man lost and out of fuel on the Skeena River on the evening of June 7.

“He’s lucky to be alive,” said Dave Jephson, vice president of Terrace Search and Rescue.

According to Terrace SAR, the subject and a friend were riding jet skis on the river. At some point, the friend turned back to Terrace due to low fuel. There, the subject’s friend notified authorities that there was an individual on a jet ski in some sort of distress, somewhere on the Skeena River between Terrace and Prince Rupert.

At 8:45 p.m., the RCMP contacted Terrace SAR, who used a helicopter to quickly respond.

The subject’s father posted on Facebook asking for anyone with a boat to help look for his son who was lost on the river and out of fuel on a jet ski. The post was shared over 700 times and had over 150 comments, which made it difficult for authorities to know what information was accurate and reliable.

“RCMP did a great job trying to piece together a chaotic situation, you can’t run searches on Facebook,” said Jephson.

RCMP were able to get a ping on a cellphone approximately 35 kilometres west of Terrace, a distance which Jephson described as “a little bit extreme.”

The helicopter landed at the GPS coordinates provided by the RCMP – the subject was found there shortly after 10:00 p.m. alive but very cold, out of fuel and needing assistance.

“The severity of the issue, which is being lost I think is that nobody knew where he was, nobody knew where he was going, very fortunate that he did have a life jacket on, so that’s one positive side of things,” said Jephson. He also noted that the subject stayed with the jet ski.

After Terrace SAR made contact with the subject, some fishermen that were nearby came over to the scene. The subject chose to go with the fishermen, who took him to Exchamsiks boat launch where he met the RCMP. The search and rescue crew returned to Terrace.

READ MORE: B.C. sees spike in search and rescue calls ahead of COVID-19 restrictions easing


@BenBogstie
ben.bogstie@terracestandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Chilliwack’s Gary Robbins maps out epic trail across eight mountains

Robbins spent nearly 40 hours covering 110 miles and over 10,000 metres of elevation gain

Driver in fatal crash near Hope pleads guilty in death of female passenger

Anthony Cortez scheduled to be sentenced for death following crime spree in 2017

Drug overdose fatalities on the rise in Chilliwack so far in 2020

Toxicity of street drugs dramatically increased during the pandemic, coroners service report shows

Missing Chilliwack man not seen for eight days

Bruce James Madill last known location was on Paula Crescent on Sept. 16

Rivers could rise rapidly as heavy rains hit Lower Mainland

Larger rivers to reach peak levels on Thursday or into Friday, according to high streamflow advisory

B.C. reports 91 new cases as officials remain worried over ‘clusters of COVID-19

There have now been a total of 8,395 cases in B.C. since the pandemic began

Increased border enforcement curbs cross-line parties at Peace Arch State Park

Gatherings between U.S. and Canadian citizens ‘a daily carnival’ – resident

B.C. Green leader says NDP abandoning environmental plan

Horgan’s claim of unstable government false, Furstenau says

Horgan promises more child care at $10 per day during Maple Ridge visit

Liberals say the NDP has failed to deliver on daycare

Mounties impound car of impaired driver celebrating birthday in North Vancouver

RCMP say the person was driving with their headlights off

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Transgender B.C. brothers debut fantasy novel as author duo Vincent Hunter

‘Transgender people are being misrepresented in popular fiction and media, and we aim to change that’

UPDATE: Abbotsford high school killer back in court for ‘not criminally responsible’ hearing

Gabriel Klein was previously convicted of stabbing Letisha Reimer to death

Most Read