Woman Rescued After Falling From Bridge on Columbia River


Multiple agencies rescued a woman Tuesday morning from the Columbia River after she fell from the northbound lane of the Interstate 205 Bridge, according to the Vancouver Fire Department.

The fire department, Portland Fire & Rescue and the Coast Guard began searching for the woman around 6:50 a.m.

According to the Vancouver fire agency, Engine 6 searched from the shore around Ellsworth Road. Portland Engine 2 marked where rescuers believed she fell so boat crews knew where to start their searches. A rescue boat from each of the three agencies searched the water.

Rescue crews found the woman clinging to a ladder on a bridge pier, the Vancouver Fire Department said in a news release.

A Vancouver rescue boat approached her from down river, and the crew pulled her onboard from a ramp, the agency said.

They treated the woman for hypothermia until they made it back to Portland's 42nd Street boat launch. Portland Fire & Rescue and AMR paramedics were waiting there to provide more aid and take her to a hospital, the news release stated.

Vancouver Fire Division Chief Tim O'Connor praised the collaboration between the agencies.

"This rescue was truly a team effort between multiple agencies," he said in the news release. "Just two weeks ago, boat crews from Vancouver Fire, Portland Fire, Portland Airport, Clark-Cowlitz Fire and the Coast Guard were training together near this area of the river. That type of training relationship is crucial when faced with a life-threatening water emergency like this morning."