August 1, 2019 1:26 am
Updated: August 1, 2019 3:37 pm

Hamilton Fire perform late night rope rescue at Albion Falls

Hamilton Fire responded to their fifth rope rescue for 2019 late Wednesday at Albion Falls.

Andrew Collins
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Hamilton Fire and paramedics responded to a rope rescue call on the east mountain late Wednesday night.

The fire department confirmed on Twitter that the rescue call came in around 9:45 p.m. from an area near Albion Falls.

Hamilton police said they assisted emergency responders with the initial search for three people, two males and one female who had lost their way in the dark and were ‘in need of assistance.’

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“We assisted in looking for them initially because their location was unknown at the time,” Staff Sgt. Craig Leishman told Global News, “They were just walking on the path, one got injured, and they called for an ambulance.”

He went on to say the female sustained a minor ankle injury.

Hamilton police also said a firefighter sustained ‘serious’ injuries to his head and face including fractures after he fell in a nearby embankment away from the water.

He was last reported on Thursday morning to be in stable condition at an area hospital.

The Ministry of Labour has dispatched an investigator to the scene.

In a release on Thursday morning, the City of Hamilton confirmed the firefighter “lost his footing and slipped over the edge, falling approximately 15 to 20 feet to the ground below.”

READ MORE: Rope rescues down substantially after upgraded waterfall safety measures, say Hamilton fire officials

Leishman confirmed that one of the two males on scene was taken in for questioning after it was discovered that he had an outstanding warrant from another police service.

Director of Licensing and ByLaw Services Ken Leendertsee says that following a review of the evidence, the hikers involved in this incident could face charges “for being in a prohibited area.”

The incident comes just days after firefighters revealed rope rescues were in significant decline across the city’s falls, following in an increase in the use of fences and signs by Hamilton’s parks department.

Deputy Chief John Verbeek told Global News on Tuesday that firefighters have only been summoned to four rope rescues so far in 2019 — a significant decrease since 2016, which saw 23 such rescues in Hamilton.

Verbeek says a typical rope rescue usually calls for six fire units, and 18 personnel on scene to assist.

The duration of those calls, he says, can range anywhere from one to five hours to complete a rescue.

WATCH: (Aug. 7, 2017) Family rescued at Hamilton waterfall after flash flooding

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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