The Blaine County Sheriff’s Office is warning water enthusiasts to proceed with caution when swimming or floating any portion of the Big Wood River following the rescue of a man from the river after his inflatable raft got lodged against a log.
Emergency responders from the Ketchum and Sun Valley fire departments were dispatched Sunday about 12:30 p.m. to a report of a rafter stuck on a log near a bridge south of Ketchum, according to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies arrived to find an inflatable raft partly submerged and lodged against a log in the middle of the river.
“Two men were attempting to keep the head of the victim, Nicholas Patrick Miller, 74, of Hailey, above water and pull him back onto the raft,” the press release stated.
Miller was eventually freed and first responders initiated CPR on the shore before he was transported via air ambulance to St. Alphonsus Hospital in Boise, where he was reported in critical condition Tuesday.
“Logs, strainers and currents are extremely dangerous and accidents can happen quickly,” Sheriff Steve Harkins stated in the press release.