ROCKPORT — RCMP officers saved the life of a woman in distress who had plunged into the frigid waters of the St. Lawrence River.
The event unfolded on the evening of March 4 when Constable Steffan Manuel happened to pull into the Rockport boat launch area. Member of a Kingston-based RCMP unit responsible for patrolling between official border entry points, the officer saw a woman exit her vehicle, run down the launch ramp and onto the ice, then into the freezing-cold water about 30 feet off shore.
Recognizing her to be in distress, Manuel prepared to enter the water after radioing for help. From the ice edge, he talked the woman into swimming back to him, pulling her back onto the ice. RCMP Constable Jason Greene arrived on scene and the two officers assisted her into a warm police vehicle where they administered first aid for hypothermia.
According to the RCMP, the woman was in the water for about five minutes and was struggling to swim back to the ice. The Ontario Provincial Police and Emergency Medical Services also arrived within minutes of her rescue. She was taken to the Brockville General Hospital.
The incident has the RCMP expressing pride in its members “who put themselves in harm’s way to help their fellow citizens.”
Coincidentally, members of the Kingston Detachment are slated to take a course on ice take later this month.