Glendale Firefighters Rescue Man From L.A. River

Firefighters pull the man out in an inflatable boat and medics take him to hospital for evaluation.

A man clinging for hours to a clump of bushes in the rain-swollen Los Angeles River was safely rescued by Glendale firefighters early Monday.

"The water was moving swiftly down the river. It was very cold and deep,'" Glendale Fire Department's Brandy Villanueva told City News Service.

"He had been on solid ground in the channel at some point, but that ground became an  island, then disappeared because of heavy rain flooding the riverbed,'' Villanueva said.

Glendale firefighters received the call at about 5 a.m. and were assisted by
fire units from Los Angeles and Alhambra, including swift water rescue personnel, Villanueva said.

Firefighters stretched catcher devices below bridges crossing the river at Victory Boulevard, Colorado Boulevard, and Los Feliz Boulevard on the northeast corner of Griffith Park, then launched an inflatable boat shortly after 7 a.m., according to Villanueva.

Firefighters aboard the craft plucked the man to safety minutes later, she said.

"They deployed a ladder over the water to act as a pulley device to safely guide the boat back to the east bank of the river,'' Villanueva said.

Firefighters at the scene said the man, whose age and identity are not yet known, showed no apparent injuries. He was transported to a nearby hospital for evaluation.

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