PARKSLEY, Va. (WAVY) — Rescue crews used chainsaws and waded through six football fields of wooded marsh on Tuesday to save two people suffering from heat exhaustion in the area of Parkers Landing Road, west of Parksley.
The Parksley Volunteer Fire Department says EMS was first notified just before 9 a.m. for a female with breathing problems in the marsh.
Parksley sent several search and rescue units to the area and a drone from the Accomack County Department of Public Safety was launched.
During the process, dispatchers notified rescuers that there was a second person overcome by heat. The high temperature was 83 degrees on Tuesday in Parksley.
A helicopter wasn’t able to fly due to the weather, but dispatchers sent screenshots of the area where the 911 call came from, nearly 600 yards from the road through a wooded area in the marsh.
After firefighters Robbie Lewis and Ken Midgett were able to find both patients, fire crews used chainsaws to cut multiple trees to create a path for an all terrain vehicle and EMS to get to the “priority one” patients, who were in an altered mental status from the heat exhaustion and dehydration, firefighters say.
About three hours after the initial call, both patients were loaded into ambulances and taken to Riverside Shore Memorial Hospital.
WAVY has reached out to see how they’re doing and to learn more about how they got into the woods, and how long they had been there.
Parksley’s Wayne Marshall, the commanding officer of the incident, said he “would like to express his appreciation for the exceptional team work that was performed by several agencies from our county and state, including the Eastern Shore of Virginia 9-1-1 Center as they played a key roll assisting with locating the two individuals. Thank you all for the hard work in the extreme heat conditions.”