EDITED to correct name of rock involved in rescue.
Newport Beach firefighters and lifeguards conducted a two-hour rescue to save a person stranded on Ladder Rock near Cameo Shores on Monday evening.
The rescue began at 8:37 p.m., when the male became stranded on the rock while climbing in a restricted area with friends, according to a department news release. The victim became stranded on the 35-foot by 100-foot rock which protrudes from the water, and he was unable to get safely off the rocks.
Firefighters, lifeguards, the HB1 helicopter and Orange County Sheriff’s Department’s Harbor Patrol rescue boat responded, the statement said.
“Due to the kelp and rocks, the OC Sheriffs Rescue Boat was unable to get close enough to assist the victim,” the statement said. “HB1 Helicopter assisted with reconnaissance, overhead lighting and directed the firefighters and lifeguards to good access and anchor points. Additionally, a security team from one of the oceanfront homes assisted with lighting the rescue area.”
A Newport Beach firefighter was able to wade to the large rock to check on the victim and reassure him while lifeguards began swimming nearby to assess water depth and hazards, the statement said.
“Firefighters performed a high-angle rescue from the top of the large rock with a 35-foot ladder and a rescue group of eight firefighters traversed approximately 100 feet from the west to the east side over the top of (Ladder) rock to set up a lowering operation to reach the stranded person,” the statement said. “Once anchor points were secured, a firefighter was lowered to secure the person with a rescue harness and the team lowered the person to the waterline, where a lifeguard was waiting in the water to assist the individual to shore. The firefighter was then lifted back up to the top of the cliff and the rescue was completed, with no injuries to the victim or any rescue personnel.”
Paramedics assessed the victim after he was off the rocks, but he declined further treatment, the statement said.
“The Newport Beach Fire Department would like to remind people to stay out of the restricted rocky area and use extreme caution while traversing rocks near the ocean,” the statement said. “The rocks can be slippery or the tide can rise and strand individuals.”