Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Punch Bowl Falls, a lush, dramatic and inviting forest-encased waterfall on Eagle Creek, enticed four cliff jumpers into its cool waters on June 2 and claimed the life of one man, leaving three others injured.
Five friends took the Eagle Creek trail for a late spring hiking adventure: four made it home, but Jason Endicott, 25, of Cincinnati, Ohio, did not. His remains were recovered by search teams on June 3.
At about 5 p.m. Sunday, the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office received a report of multiple men injured at the falls.
A team of 22 local rescue personnel arrived on the scene within minutes of the emergency call; initiated by two of the hikers in the group who had raced down the trail after the ill-fated jump to phone for help.
The names of Endicott’s hiking partners have not been released.
What is known is that four of the men made the jump into the pool below the falls from a natural platform on the eastern cliff above. The water was estimated to be between 40 and 45 degrees.
Two of the men suffered minor injuries from the jump; a third was more seriously injured: He was rescued using rope crews and carried out by emergency personnel.
As darkness fell, emergency response teams suspended recovery operations for Endicott’s body at 9 p.m. to prevent further risk to rescue personnel.
Cascade Locks Fire and Rescue along with the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office initially responded to the location.
Rescue personnel from the Crag Rats and Multnomah County Rural Fire District 14 also assisted.
Crews from the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office Dive Team, Crag Rats and West Side Fire Department completed recovery of Endicott’s remains on Monday.
According to Hood River County Sheriff Matt English, Endicott’s body was found in the waters below the cliff where he jumped, at a depth of about 12 feet.
The exact cause of death is not yet known.
English urges people not to make jumps or dives into waterfalls: “This action is extremely dangerous and routinely results in injuries.”
This was the second incident involving an injury at Punch Bowl Falls during the same weekend.
A sign at the trail head warns that cliff jumping into the pool is illegal and may result in a $300 fine.
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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"
Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge