Firefighters pluck man out of tree |

Firefighters pluck man out of tree

Special to the Daily Vail firefighters rescued a stuck tree trimmer in the Intermountain neighborhood of West Vail on Sunday.

VAIL The Vail Fire Department has a ladder truck that reaches 85 feet high, and it needed every foot of that to save a stranded tree-trimmer Sunday evening.Firefighters used the truck to pluck the man out of the tree in the Intermountain neighborhood of West Vail. He was working on Bellflower Drive when he accidentally lowered his lift onto a tree he’d already cut, leaving him stranded 80 feet up in the air, said Fire Chief John Gulick.

Firefighters precariously raised the ladder truck around trees and power lines up to the stranded man.”It was a little short of the necessary height, so we had to hook him up to a rope a lower him a short distance, maybe 4 or 5 feet,” said Firefighter Ryan Sutter, who was raised in the ladder truck’s platform up to the stranded man.Sutter recently completed rope-rescue training in Rifle, but the ropes were used Sunday more as a precaution than a necessity, he said.

It took a couple of hours to get the man down, Gulick said.The tree-trimmer stayed unruffled during the ordeal, said Fire Technician Al Bosworth, who maneuvered the ladder truck up to the man.”He was real calm,” Bosworth said. “He was well versed in being up high.”

Staff Writer Edward Stoner can be reached at 748-2929 or, Colorado

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