Responders were able to safely retrieve the three kayakers, who all managed to make it to the river’s edge in the gorge. Photo courtesy of Puget Sound Fire.

Responders were able to safely retrieve the three kayakers, who all managed to make it to the river’s edge in the gorge. Photo courtesy of Puget Sound Fire.

3 kayakers rescued from Green River Gorge

Puget Sound Fire released a statement after the late evening rescue that lakes and rivers are still extremely cold this time of year.

  • By Bailey Jo Josie
  • Thursday, June 8, 2023 12:57pm
  • News

Three kayakers went missing in the Green River Gorge just hours before sundown on Wednesday, prompting the response of multiple agencies in southeast King County.

At approximately 7:45 p.m., Enumclaw Fire, Puget Sound Fire, Valley Regional Fire, Renton Fire, King County Medic One and King County Sherriff’s Office were dispatched to the 29500 block of the Green River Gorge north of Enumclaw and east of Black Diamond on June 7.

“People called [911] fairly quickly, they saw three people in the water and then couldn’t see them anymore,” said Chief Pat Pawlak of the Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority.

According to authorities, the two male kayakers were able to make it to the river’s edge but the one female kayaker was still missing.

Rescue kayaks were deployed and a boat was lowered from a bridge elevated at 200 feet to firefighters waiting below. Responders were able to retrieve the female kayaker, who was able to make it the edge of the river gorge.

All three missing kayakers were assisted out of the river and sustained no injuries.

In a statement, Puget Sound Fire made a reminder that, despite recent high temperatures, local lakes and rivers are still extremely cold and that everyone should use personal flotation devices when in the water.

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