Rescuers get Courtenay man home for Christmas

Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue volunteers rescued a back-country skier trapped on a mountain ledge on Forbidden Plateau.


Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue volunteers rescued a back-country skier trapped on a mountain ledge on Forbidden Plateau on the weekend.

Comox Valley RCMP alerted CVGSAR to the situation around 12:30 p.m. Saturday when Lawrence Floucault, a Courtenay resident in his early-20s, was stranded in waist-deep snow after traversing down a slope.

With assistance from Arrowsmith SAR and Campbell River’s Helicopter External Extraction Team, volunteers initiated a ‘top-down rope rescue.’

Rescuers could maintain cell phone contact with Floucault, who was equipped with a GPS unit.

Unable to access the area by helicopter due to weather conditions, two ground teams of four were air inserted within one kilometre of Floucault. A third team of six reached the area by snowmobile.

Travel conditions were difficult due to steep terrain, heavy winds, snowfall and darkness. By 9 p.m. CVGSAR requested 442 Squadron to locate the wet and shivering Floucault, who was unable to light his stove. The squadron, however, could not access the young man due to considerable cloud cover.

Ground teams reached Floucault shortly before 10 p.m. After assessing his condition, they decided to continue through the night to find a safe route.

They eventually reached the parking lot early Christmas morning at the old Forbidden Plateau lodge site. Ambulance attendants assessed Floucault and three SAR personnel for exhaustion and dehydration. Rescuers then delivered Floucault to his family.

“This is what we train for,” CVGSAR Search Manger Paul Berry said. “This is what we do. We put aside our lives to assist those in need, regardless of the weather, time of day or special occasions. What better Christmas gift could you give parents than the life of their child?”

Two members helicoptered back to the mountains to retrieve the rope gear and Floucault’s equipment that had been cached.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

L’Arche Comox Valley community reeling over findings of inquiry into founder

The local L’Arche community is reeling in the wake of a report… Continue reading

Comox Valley Waldorf School closing

The Comox Valley Waldorf School (CVWS) is familiar with change. It has… Continue reading

Comox Valley students sparkle with gold at Skills Canada event

Valley secondary students captured gold in 13 of the 20 different trades and technology-based events.

VIU students pitch planning projects to Cumberland

Students looked at topics such as historical values and parking issues

Comox Valley ends tough VIJHL season with a win

Glacier Kings more than double last year’s win total but miss post-season

Annual Comox Valley fundraiser closing in on $100,000 goal

The Comox Valley Transition Society and the Dawn to Dawn Action on… Continue reading

VIDEO: B.C.’s seventh coronavirus patient at home in Fraser Health region

Canada in ‘containment’ as COVID-19 spreads in other countries

Canadian L’Arche group shocked by report that founder sexually abused women

A report by a French-based charity that helps people who are developmentally… Continue reading

B.C. takes over another Retirement Concepts senior care home

Summerland facility latest to have administrator appointed

RCMP pull office from Wet’suwet’en territory, but hereditary chiefs still want patrols to end

Chief says temporary closure of field office not enough as Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute drags on

Prescription opioids getting B.C. addicts off ‘poisoned’ street drugs

Minister Judy Darcy says Abbotsford pilot project working

Royals, Elvis, Captain Cook: Hundreds of wax figures find new life in B.C. man’s home

Former director of Victoria’s Royal London Wax Museum still hopes to revive wax figure tourism

Teck CEO says Frontier withdrawal a result of tensions over climate, reconciliation

Don Lindsay speaks at mining conference, a day after announcing suspension of oilsands project

Most Read