Great Barrington – Fire Chief Charles Burger reports that just before 1 p.m. today (August 10) the Great Barrington Fire Department was dispatched, along with Southern Berkshire Ambulance and Great Barrington Police, for a report of a person fallen 30 feet over a cliff. The calling party reported they were unable to make contact with her from the top.
It took rescue crews about an hour to locate her by hiking to the top of the mountain and rappelling down the face of Squaw Peak. She had fallen about 75 feet and was hung up part way down the cliff. The initial rescuers were able to stabilize her while additional crews rigged rope systems to haul her back up. Simultaneously, more rope systems were rigged to lower her down the steep trails to a UTV that transported her to the parking lot.
She was flown by Life Net to Albany Medical Center with serious injuries, though not considered to be life threatening.
It took 50 rescuers four hours to bring her off the mountain and an additional two hours to remove all the equipment and return in service. The operation was very technical and labor intensive.
“I would like to thank the many crews from multiple agencies who worked seamlessly together to bring the best outcome to someone’s worst day,” Burger said. “We wish the hiker a full and speedy recovery.”
The agencies that assisted are the Western Massachusetts Technical Rescue Team, the Egremont, Sheffield, Stockbridge and Monterey Fire Departments, Southern Berkshire Ambulance, Great Barrington Police, and the Great Barrington Fire Department Support Group.