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Woman Stranded in Arizona Tried to Call for Help for 5 Days

Image: Woman Stranded in Arizona Tried to Call for Help for 5 Days

Note left for rescuers by Amber Vanhecke stranded near Grand Canyon. (Arizona Department of Public Safety)

By    |   Friday, 24 Mar 2017 09:05 AM

A Texas woman stranded in Arizona near the Grand Canyon used her car battery to keep her cellphone charged and walked around for five days trying to find call signals, one of which led to her rescue by helicopter.

Amber Vanhecke, 24, ran out of gas in the remote area near Indian Route 18 where she went for a hike while on spring break, reported the Arizona Republic.

She was finally able to make a 911 call to the Coconino County Sheriff's Department, but the call dropped before authorities could obtain her exact location.

"… Using their knowledge of the area, deputies from the sheriff's office and troopers with the Air Rescue unit determined a likely area where the victim could be," said Ariona public safety officials. "She was prepared and followed the proper survival procedures in this situation, which made it possible for the Arizona Department of Public Safety Air Rescue unit to successfully find and bring her to safety."

The helicopter found her vehicle with a large makeshift "HELP" sign located nearby. Vanhecke left a note at the vehicle saying she was walking to find a cellphone signal.

"(The helicopter) took off and flew east, following the road. They spotted the victim on the road frantically waiving to get their attention," the department said. "Ranger landed to give assistance."

"… Her food was gone and she had almost run out of water when found by the Ranger helicopter crew. She was treated at the scene for exposure, placed in the helicopter, and transported to the trauma center in Flagstaff."

Trooper Edgar Bissonette said Vanhecke was "smart and prepared" for her trip, which helped in finding her.

"Even though she was down to her last bit of water, it kept her going," Bissonette said. "When she left the vehicle, she left notes so we knew where to find her. She did everything right."

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A woman stranded in Arizona near the Grand Canyon used her car battery to keep her cellphone charged and walked for five days trying to find call signals, one of which led to her rescue by helicopter.
woman, stranded, arizona
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2017-05-24
Friday, 24 Mar 2017 09:05 AM
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