Injured driver missing for four days rescued on Blewett Pass

Nov 24, 2021, 8:10 AM | Updated: 8:28 am
Emergency responders rescue a woman who went over an embankment on Blewett Pass and was stuck in he...
Emergency responders rescue a woman who went over an embankment on Blewett Pass and was stuck in her car for several days. (Photo courtesy of WSDOT Blog)
(Photo courtesy of WSDOT Blog)

An injured driver who was reported missing approximately four days earlier was rescued Monday night, Wenatchee Valley fire officials said.

The 68-year-old driver, Lynell McFarland from Spokane Valley, was found in her wrecked car down a steep embankment on Blewett Pass, according to a Facebook post from Wenatchee Valley Firefighters, Local 453.

The technical rope rescue team from the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office was able to transfer the patient to the roadway during the rescue Monday. Several other agencies provided the command structure for the incident and performed the critical task of extricating the patient.

The Washington State Department of Transportation says in a blog post about the rescue that Aaron Byrd, the maintenance tech lead for Blewett Pass, was off duty when he noticed a social media post about the missing person, which included a photo of where her cellphone had last pinged from. He recognized the location, WSDOT says, and alerted the night maintenance crew.

In snowplows, at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 22, maintenance techs checked over an embankment in the area Byrd mentioned, and spotted a vehicle about 40 feet down that matched the description of McFarland’s car. WSDOT says knowing precisely where to look and taking the time to do so was “vital.”

Emergency responders then roped down over the embankment, and found McFarland in her car. She was still conscious. She was transported to Central Washington Hospital in Wenatchee with minor injuries.

Find a link to the GoFundMe for the driver here.

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Injured driver missing for four days rescued on Blewett Pass