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LAKE WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – A firefighter was hurt early Friday morning while rescuing a man who fell about 40 feet down an embankment at Lake Worth. It happened at about 6:00 a.m. in the 8300 block of Cahoba Drive, on the east shore of the lake.
Emergency crews with the Fort Worth Fire Department and MedStar were trying to reach the 26-year-old man and get him back up to the land above. The man was reportedly hiking with a woman in the dark when he slipped down a steep slope. This was not along any designated walking path.
The victim was originally said to be in critical condition, unconscious with multiple fractures. He was carried to Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth by air ambulance. Officials have now stated that, despite his numerous injuries, the man is expected to survive. He was released from the hospital later Friday morning. His name has not been released.
During the cliff rescue efforts, one firefighter fell about 12 feet and suffered a broken ankle while trying to reach for the equipment being used to retrieve the fall victim along rough terrain. MedStar took him to Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth as well for treatment. He, too, was released from the hospital later Friday morning.
“The hard part is getting out, especially when you have a patient who’s injured,” said Kyle Clay with the Fort Worth Fire Department. “If you can imagine picking up 200 pounds and climbing a hill with four other people, it’s hard to do. That is what they were trying to do, get up the hill, and one of the firefighters slipped and fell.”
The firefighter was later identified as Lt. David Klemencic, a 23-year veteran of the Fort Worth Fire Department.
Both patients had to first be removed from the scene by boat. They came ashore at the Cahoba boat ramp, located off to the southwest of where the fall took place.