Woman Being Treated for Hypothermia Following River Rescue in Oil City

| January 15, 2021

OIL CITY, Pa. (EYT) – Officials have released the details of a river rescue that took place in Oil City late Thursday morning.

According to Oil City Fire Department Chief Mark Hicks, the department was dispatched by Venango County 9-1-1 for a water rescue in the Allegheny River near the Wye Bridge around 10:00 a.m.

Oil City Fire, Oil City Police, Franklin Fire, and Community Ambulance Service responded to the scene.

Hicks reported that upon their arrival at the scene, a nude female was located sitting approximately 30 yards from the North shore of the river.

The temperature when the incident took place was around 34 degrees Fahrenheit, and the water temperature was estimated to be the same.

Fire Department personnel then made contact with the female, attempting to get her to come to the shore. Personnel also attempted to throw rope bags to the female. However, the female made no attempts to grab the rope – whether because of hypothermia, mental status, or a combination of the two.

Personnel attempted to reach the scene via boat that is on loan to the fire department, but a mechanical issue with the craft left Oil City Fire personnel no choice but to enter the water.

According to Hicks, three personnel entered the water with protective equipment donned and were able to grab onto the female and drag her to the North shoreline. The female was then secured for her own safety and covered with a jacket.

Franklin’s boat then arrived on the scene and transported the patient to the marina where Community Ambulance Service was staged for transport.

Another Community Ambulance Service unit arrived on location of the north shore of the incident and evaluated three fire department personnel that had been in the river. Those firefighters were not injured but suffered minor signs of hypothermia. The firefighters returned to duty after getting some dry clothes and heat.

The female was transported by Community Ambulance to UPMC Northwest for treatment of hypothermia. Her current condition is unknown.

Venango County Mental Health, as well as the Oil City Police Department, are continuing to investigate the incident.

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Woman Rescued from Allegheny River in Oil City


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