ST. GEORGE, Utah (ABC4 Utah) – a family of five is home safe after being rescued on the Virgin River near the Utah-Arizona border.
The family started at Man O War Bridge in St. George for what should have been close to a 15-mile ride down the river. When they didn’t return home relatives called police early Tuesday morning.
“St. George Police Department asked LifeFlight if they were willing to go fly the river,” said Darrell Cashin, Washington County Sheriff Search and Rescue Liaison.
Several agencies joined in on the search. LifeFlight, Mojave County, and Washington County focused on the Cedar Pocket area in Arizona where the family planned to end their trip, and where their vehicle was discovered.
“We’ve built a really good working network with all of our other agencies, And in fact, over the last weekend We were actually out in Arizona three times,” said Cashin.
LifeFlight spotted the two adults and three children who said they were scared and exhausted. Rescuers learned they had misjudged how slow the current was, and were walking because the water was too shallow. They had no food, water, or cell phones.
“There’s been a significant increase in searches this year, that not only includes us but also Mohave County, you know just across the border. The good side of it is that it did turn out well, nobody was hurt, nobody had any exposure issues or problems. All I can say is we got to thank LifeFlight for being willing to do that in the middle of the night,” said Cashin.