At approximately 6:30 p.m. on June 30, paramedics, RCMP, the Lake Cowichan Fire Department and Search and Rescue were called out to Marie Canyon, near Skutz Falls, to rescue yet another person from the Cowichan River.
The young man had apparently lost his tube after missing the spot he and his friends had identified as the end point of their afternoon river adventure.
Neither local RCMP, LCFD or Search and Rescue were able to give the name of the man, who is from Victoria, but his close friend Rodney (who did not want to disclose his last name) says they have tubed down the river many times over the 17 years they have known each other.
The victim apparently sustained a minor head injury after losing his tube in the rapids, but according to his friends, he was able to pull himself from the water and wait for help.
“I’ve heard a lot of bad stories about people drowning in this part of the river,” said Rodney, adding that for a while he thought he had lost his best friend.
The two were up in Lake Cowichan for a memorial weekend for a beloved family dog who passed away sometime this past winter.
“This was her favourite spot,” said Rodney.
Const. Jim Preston of the Lake Cowichan RCMP, and LCFD volunteer fireman Tyler Knott, who both have training and experience with water rescue situations, were called in to bring the man to safety.
In the above photo, Fire Chief Doug Knott talks to the stranded man and coordinates rescue teams, while the inset photo shows Preston and Tyler Knott suiting up the victim with a lifejacket and tether to bring him back to safety.
The victim was taken to Duncan Hospital via ambulance, and depending on his condition, he was most likely released a short time later, according to Preston.
Lake Cowichan Fire Department and RCMP had a busy Canada Day weekend, as they had to respond to another call immediately after this rescue. Thus they were not able to provide further information by press time.