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HomeNewsHelicopter Rescue for Tourist in Costa Rica Canyon

Helicopter Rescue for Tourist in Costa Rica Canyon

On Saturday, the Costa Rican Red Cross received an alert indicating that a Spanish tourist was trapped in one of the canyons of the La Palma ravine, near the Turrialba volcano, in Cartago. Apparently, the young woman suffered a fall and was seriously injured, and was not able to get out by her own means.

Mauricio Mendoza, the regional operational coordinator of the Costa Rican Red Cross, explained that relief units, with the assistance of a private company, mobilized to the site but encountered difficulties performing the rescue due to the challenging access to the area.

Nineteen Red Cross volunteers worked more than 30 hours this Sunday to aid the tourist. They stated that rescue efforts would continue into Monday.

According to Wagner Leiva Rivera, the national director of Emergency Response for the Red Cross, the tourist was part of a group that entered the area, which is within the Cordillera Volcánica Central Forest Reserve.

This canyon is situated on a private farm on the road to Guápiles and is frequently used for extreme sports. Since it falls outside the boundaries of the National Park, SINAC permits are not required. However, the private farms within the protected area are responsible for safeguarding the water and forest resources and are attempting to restrict access due to the risks involved.

The group involved in the accident consisted of seven individuals, six Spanish tourists, and one Costa Rican, on an adventure sports expedition. As of Sunday afternoon, three Spaniards had been rescued and left the scene walking with the rescuers from the Specialized Search and Rescue Unit.

Among all the visitors involved in the accident, the young woman who fell into the canyon is the only one in delicate condition, having apparently suffered a hip fracture.

The Red Cross explained that mobilization in this area is challenging, as it is situated amidst a waterfall, in a deep and topographically difficult terrain.

Reina Sánchez, the administrator of the Irazú and Turrialba Volcanoes Conservation Block, noted recent reports of people entering the Turrialba Volcano National Park through sectors called La Fila and Cerro San Carlos, which is prohibited. Such activities could lead to serious accidents similar to the one involving the Spanish tourists, particularly when undertaken with individuals who are not certified guides.

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