A new Pima County Sheriff's Department helicopter and rescue hoist was credited in the rescue of the hiker that was overdue for 2 days on Mount Lemmon.
Sunday morning Pima County Sheriff’s Department received
information from a rancher that believed he spotted someone on the north side of the Santa Catalina Mountains, near Davis Springs. He was able to provide global positioning system (GPS) coordinates of where he believed the man was last seen, and the Sheriff’s Air Unit was directed to that location.
They located Mr. Scott Bertrand in that area and were able to successfully rescue him. He was found in good health and transported to a safe location were other rescue personnel awaited to further evaluate his condition. He was ultimately reunited with his family at the Sheriff’s Department Rincon District station.
While at the station, a second evaluation was performed by medical personnel, and it was determined that Mr. Bertrand did not need any
further medical attention and was not transported to the hospital.
The search was an effort by Southern Arizona Rescue Association (SARA), Southwest Rescue Dogs, Inc. (SARDI), Southern Arizona Mounted Search and Rescue (SAMSAR), and Arizona Department of Public Safety Air Rescue Tucson.
On July 25 at 8:20 p.m., Pima County Sheriff deputies received information of an overdue party. The initial information provided was that of a 54-year-old male who had gone out hiking earlier that morning and his wife had contact with him around 11 a.m., and had not heard from him since. The wife was unable to provide a specific location as to where her husband was hiking, but explained that he was prepared for the hike.
She went on to say that they were visiting from out of town and unfamiliar with the area. He was last seen wearing a white shirt, blue shorts, and carrying a yellow back pack.
Given that the information was very vague and no particular area wasdescribed for the deputies to search, an attempt to locate bulletin was aired. This information was also provided to all local area law enforcement agencies for their dissemination.
Deputies then searched some of the more popular tourist hiking locations, but the man and his vehicle were not located at that time. Early morning on July 26th, the Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Unit was activated and began their search for the lost hiker.
They received information from the man’s cellphone provider as to his possible location and had several Global Positioning System (GPS) coordinates to work with. The man’s vehicle was located a few hours later and the search has been underway all day.
The Sothern Arizona Rescue Association has been assisting the Sheriff’s Search and Rescue deputies and the Sheriff’s Department air unit has been used as well. Every effort is being made and all resources are being used in order to help locate the missing hiker.
Search and Rescue personnel are gearing up to work into the night and through tomorrow morning.