Teams rescue man hurt at Westfield River in Cummington

  • Flashing police lights File photo

Staff Writer
Published: 7/28/2020 6:53:43 PM

CUMMINGTON — Emergency responders from four towns were involved in the rescue of an injured man at a remote swimming area near Kings Corner on Monday afternoon.  

The man had fallen approximately 20 feet down an embankment near the swimming area in the Westfield River, according to Cummington Fire Chief Adam Dragon. He was found by a swimmer.

It took around two hours for fire crews from Cummington, Goshen and Plainfield, as well as Highland Ambulance personnel to reach the man and transport him to Russell Memorial Park in Chesterfield, where the Chesterfield Fire Department had set up a landing area so he could be airlifted to a hospital.

The man’s condition was unknown as of Tuesday afternoon, according to Dragon.

The lengthy rescue was due in part to the heat wave in effect on Monday, as well as limited access to the remote location. The swimming area must be reached on foot via a trail that is about one mile long, according to Dragon.

“It’s a long way to go, and it’s a long way to carry someone out,” he said.

Around 18 rescuers took rotating shifts to carry the man out in a rescue basket, and a total of 22 people assisted at the scene. Dragon said it was an unusually high number of people involved for one rescue, but necessary because of the difficulties surrounding the rescue.

“We had tremendous help from all of our mutual aid partners … and without them, we couldn’t have made that happen,” Dragon said. “Having that help, surrounded by our towns, it’s just a huge thing.”

Jacquelyn Voghel can be reached at

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