Off-duty coast guard officers rescue injured hiker

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

A TT Coast Guard vessel. – File photo

Two off-duty coast guard officers were summoned to help a critically injured hiker on Friday who had accidentally cut his wrist in a remote forest off the north coast.

A release from the Coast Guard on Saturday said the off-duty officers who reside in a village on the north coast were called into action. With the aid of a pirogue, they were able to reach the injured hiker and take him to an ambulance.

Around 7 pm, on Friday the coast guard said it received a request for help and an interceptor was launched from its headquarters at Staubles Bay, Chaguaramas with medical personnel aboard. But after learning the hiker’s condition was critical, the off-duty officers were summoned as it would have taken too long for the interceptor the reach the location, the release said.

Officers were able to guide other members of the hiking group to stabilise the injured hiker before help arrived.

“The actions highlighted…are testament to the dedication to duty of the members of the Coast Guard who undertake this and many other operations that are not reported. it demonstrates a willingness to preserve life at all cost, allegiance to our country and its citizens, as well as resourcefulness and steadfastness in carrying out the many operational taskings the Coast Guard is required to undertake both at sea and ashore,” the statement said.

Within the last month, the actions of officers of the Coast Guard have resulted in two investigations after a one-year-old migrant baby was shot dead in February and his mother injured when officers fired on a boat with Venezuelan migrants which they claim tried to ram an interceptor and an incident on March 2, where the crew of a Grenadian vessel on its way to deliver goods were intercepted and assaulted. The officers involved in the latter incident have been removed from seagoing duties pending the outcome of the investigation.