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Firefighters rescue snowmobiler on Anarchist Mountain

Rapid response to a distress call may have saved the life of a snowmobiler on Anarchist Mountain.

Anarchist Mountain Fire Department members Duane and Grant Harfman were returning from their own snowmobile outing on Jan. 18 around 4 p.m. and responded to the call, travelling by their sleds along a trail that winds near the summit of Anarchist Mountain. They arrived on the scene to find two men with their snowmobiles, one of them unconscious but breathing.

"They loaded him into a sled they brought with them and 15 minutes later the man was packaged and delivered to the ambulance, which was waiting on Bullmoose Road," said Captain Darren Hutchinson.

The firefighters then made another trip up the trail to retrieve the man's snowmobile.

The emergency call was initially routed to Oliver Search and Rescue through the emergency dispatch centre in Kelowna. Recognizing the call was originating from Anarchist Mountain and it would take them more than an hour to respond, search and rescue asked dispatch to request firefighters assist with the search. Hutchinson said the fire department responds to numerous calls annually, most related to motor vehicle accidents on Highway 3. He said he expects that to change.

"As more and more people move on to the mountain and more and more people begin to explore the mountain, I don't think this is going to be too unique for us," said Hutchinson.

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