Calgary, AB,

Close call on river leads to emergency rescue

A mother and her 10-year-old son had to be rescued from the boom over the Bow River at Harvie Passage yesterday after their raft overturned and became stuck under the boom.

During regular patrols of the river, the Calgary Police Service Marine Unit came across the overturned raft at approximately 5:45 p.m., on Sunday, June 25, 2017. They found the mother and child clinging to the boom chain.

After several passes by the Marine Unit from upstream in an attempt to reach the stranded people, the mother yelled that she could no longer hold on. Officers took decisive action and lodged the CPS boat against the boom, providing a stable platform to recover the pair into the safety of the boat.

Two other members of the family had made it to shore safely. It is believed the family was attempting to portage to shore when they were overpowered by the winds, which blew them back into the main current channel, resulting in the boat hitting the boom.

“Had the family not been wearing lifejackets, this would have had a tragic outcome. There is no doubt the lives of this family were saved by wearing properly fitting lifejackets,” says Insp. Ryan Ayliffe. “I am also incredibly proud of our Marine Unit members for their quick thinking that lead to the successful rescue of this family.”

The Calgary Fire Department assisted in transporting the mother and child to shore before returning to provide assistance by towing the CPS Marine Unit boat out of the boom. The CPS would like to thank the Calgary Fire Department for their assistance.