Driver Survives 5-Day Wait For Rescue After Crashing Off 100-Foot Cliff

A photo of firefighters rescuing a driver that plunged off a cliff.
A photo of firefighters rescuing a driver that plunged off a cliff.

A team of 20 firefighters took part in the rescue.

Firefighters in California were called out to a risky recuse operation this weekend after a truck driver plunged off the side of a 100-foot cliff. The driver crashed off a two-lane road that skirted a cliff side between the towns of Arvin and Stallion Springs, California, and spent five days at the bottom before rescuers were called out to help.

According to ABC News, the driver was “immobilized” by the fall off the highway, which occurred on Tuesday August 29. They then spent the next five days stuck in their truck with no way of calling for help. Thankfully, a passerby reported seeing the stricken car at the bottom of the cliff on Saturday (September 2) and dialed 911. ABC News reports:


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To do this, the assembled team “built a rope rescue system to quickly lower one firefighter down to make patient contact,” Kern County Fire Department explained in a post on Instagram. Once they discovered that the patient was injured, they lowered three further firefighters down to the wreckage.

Once the team reached the driver, they were secured in a stokes basket, which is a kind of stretcher, and gradually raised back up to safety. To raise the patient up the bank, the remaining firefighters at the top of the hill hauled at the rope to gradually pull the stretcher, the driver and the four firefighters back to safety.

When the whole group reached the top, the patient was loaded into a helicopter and transported to a nearby hospital for treatment. The driver has not yet been identified by authorities.

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