Crash victim rescued in Vernonia after screams for help, alert from Apple device
VERNONIA, Ore. (KPTV) - A woman was rescued after driving off a 30-foot embankment, when her Apple device alerted first responders about the crash in Vernonia on Friday.
The woman, Ashly, said she was simply driving home around 10 p.m. on Timber Road.
“For some reason I hit the edge of the road and I went straight into a deep part of the hill,” Ashly said. “When I went down, I must’ve passed out and the airbags went up.”
She says her iPhone saved her life.
“I had a SOS and it just automatically turned on,” Ashly said.
Authorities say the alert came in as a “vehicle accident, unknown injury.”
When Ashly’s Apple device sensed she might have been in an accident, it automatically alerted the Columbia 911 Communications District and sent them her location, leading Vernonia Rural Fire Protection District and Metro West Ambulance-Hillsboro to the scene.
However, on arriving, the emergency responders could not find the crash.
Dispatchers reported they got a second call from a neighbor saying they could hear someone screaming for help. This helped them find Ashly 30 feet down the embankment and in heavy brush.
Charollette Tannery with Vernonia Rural Fire Protection District said this rescue was a first for their department.
“This is the first time we’ve experienced a call like that, so this was all new to us,” Tannery said.
Kendrick Leaverton, also with Vernonia Rural Fire, said, “We activated the rope rescue teams through mutual aid agreements with Banks Fire and Mist-Birkenfeld Fire.”
The Banks Fire District along with Mist-Birkenfeld helped perform a high-angle rope rescue to bring Ashly up to the road.
Ashly says she’s thankful to be alive.
“I’m very sore, very sore. Lot of emotions right now,” Ashly said. “Thank God the rescue team came and found me.”
Ashly says her arms, legs, and face are bruised, but is glad to be on the mend. She also wanted to thank the neighbors who also helped get her to safety.
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