Man jumps off cliff, rescued from tree in Pa.

Firefighters set up lighting and made their way down to a small ravine where the man was stuck

By Ryan Robinson
The Intelligencer Journal/New Era

LANCASTER, Pa. — A man was rescued after jumping off Chickies Rock in an apparent suicide attempt early Thursday morning, according to police.

Emergency responders were dispatched just after midnight to Chickies Rock County Park along the Susquehanna River in West Hempfield Township.

"A 20-year-old county man attempted suicide," township police Sgt. Russell Geier said. "He jumped, but got hung up in a tree about 50 feet down the cliff."

The man called 911 during the incident, Geier said.

Firefighters set up lighting and made their way down to a small ravine where the man was stuck, West Hempfield Fire & Rescue Chief Barry Carter said. They put a body harness on him that was attached to several ropes.

Firefighters then worked in concert with others at the top of the cliff to perform a rescue involving rappelling and rigging techniques, the chief said. Those at the top pulled the ropes to help hoist the man up the cliff.

It took about an hour to get him safely up the cliff to a place where emergency medical personnel could tend to his injuries, Carter said. "He suffered minor injuries," the fire chief said. "He was alert and seemed to be OK."

About 35 firefighters from West Hempfield Fire & Rescue, Susquehanna Fire Company in Columbia and Maytown-East Donegal Township Fire Company assisted in the rescue, Carter said.

Police did not identify the man because he attempted suicide, Geier said. He was taken by police to Lancaster General Hospital for an involuntary commitment.

Copyright 2011 Lancaster Newspapers, Inc.

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