An incredible rescue of a man trapped between waterfalls in California was caught on newly released video, and his rescuers are now receiving awards for their heroicism.
A swimmer’s leisurely float down the Yuba River almost turned into a deadly nightmare when he suddenly became stranded just feet away from a 45-foot-high waterfall drop.
In the incredible video from June, 2017, the man is stranded helplessly on a rock in the middle of the rushing, powerful water of the Yuba River.
Terrifying and trapped: The swimmer sits on a rock between two waterfalls, with water powerfully rushing all around him
The helicopter, piloted by Monty Emery, had to navigate the narrow ravine, and then hover directly above the stranded swimmer on the rock to successfully save him
Truckee firefighter Dave Fichter is pictured after he safely secured the swimmer to the hoist to be taken to safety
He sits on the only safe surface, a granite slab smack in the middle of the river, according to SF Gate.
As California Highway Patrol and Cal Fire worked on the dangerous rescue, it is pilot Monty Emery who had to navigate the helicopter through the narrow ravine, and remain at a steady hover just above the swimmer.
Next, Truckee firefighter Dave Fichter was able to safely load the fortunate man onto a hoist.
The still yet unidentified swimmer was then taken to a local hospital for treatment.
Emery, Fitcher and Truckee paramedic Mathew Calcutt were all honored with the Higgins and Langley Memorial Award one year later for their heroic and ambitious rescue.
Pilot Monty Emergy, paramedic Mathew Calcutt and firefighter Dave Fitcher received an award this month for their heroic, and ambitious rescue in June of 2017
The Yuba River is a dangerous waterway for swimmers, other aquatic enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.
A climber fell nearby, while another swimmer was injured- both incidents occurred just this spring- and both incidents required helicopter rescues.
The CHP says the best way to keep safe near moving water is to be aware of the location at all times, don’t set out alone, and be especially cautions around rushing water.