Mount Rainier National Park officials are preparing to release a plan to eliminate hoist operations from military CH-47 Chinook helicopters for rescues.
The helicopters were the fastest means of rescue but the process was also very risky at 15,000 feet. The reconsideration came as a result of the 2012 rescue which wound up killing a Rainier climbing ranger.
The park is considering a short haul helicopter plans where “rangers will clip into a line suspended from a helicopter 100 or more feet above, and be flown as ‘human external cargo’ to the rescue site.” Short haul has increasingly become the standard around the world.
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