Incident Report

Kern County Fire Department

Nathan Goossens

Canyon Incident
DATE: May 12, 2023
TIME: 01:40

Incident Number


Incident tYPE

Reinforced Rescue
Location: HWY 178 West of Borel Rd
Closest Community: Lake Isabella
Cause: Undetermined

Incident Narrative

Kern River Canyon, CA., Friday at approximately 1:40 A.M. The Kern County Fire Department responded to a possible traffic collision reported by a vehicle’s on board automated notifier. The vehicle’s occupants were able to advise they were somewhere on HWY 178. Occupants were complaining of pain and stated they were pinned in the vehicle. CHP and KCSO started searching for the vehicle prior to KCFD’s arrival. Kern County Fire Department’s Helicopter 407 was dispatched to assist with the search. Upon firefighter’s arrival, yelling was heard from the canyon below. Crews were directed to the north side of the river on HWY 178 approximately 4.5 miles west of Borel Rd and approximately 300 feet down the canyon from the roadway. Firefighters were able to hike down the extremely steep hill and found both patients still pinned inside the vehicle and complaining of pain. Helicopter 407 was able to lower a rescuer down to victims below. Crews worked through extreme terrain to free both patients from the vehicle. Both patients were extricated, hoisted into Helicopter 407 and then transferred to an awaiting ambulance.


Injuries: 2
Fatalities: 0

Property Lost/Saved

Estimated Value LOSS: $24,000
Estimated Value SAVED: $0

KCFD Equipment Assigned

Engines: 42,71,72,76
Patrols: None
Trucks: None
Specialty Equipment: Helicopter 407, USAR 47, Division 1, Battalion 4, Battalion 7, Safety 2, PIO

Total Personnel


Assisting Agencies

Kern County Sheriffs Office, California Highway Patrol, Mercy Air, Liberty Ambulance

On Call Fire Information Officer

Phone: 1-661-330-0133

Additional images

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