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St. George Fire Dept. rescues man alone in the woods for hours

Crews with the St. George Fire Protection District rescued a man and his dog from a  wooded...
Crews with the St. George Fire Protection District rescued a man and his dog from a wooded area along the Amite River on Jan. 17, 2022.(St. George Fire Protection District)
Published: Jan. 17, 2022 at 11:30 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 17, 2022 at 5:38 PM CST
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - A man, who lives in a rural area, was out with his dog when it got away from him. He went deeper into the woods to find his dog but lost his way back. In the South, we take man’s best friend everywhere we can.

On Sunday, Jan. 16, the man had his dog with him in a fishing boat on the Amite River. But when he docked, his beloved pet jumped out and ran off. He was lucky to find his four-legged friend but couldn’t find his way back to his boat.

“We got a call for an individual that was stranded in the woods. And it was really cold last night so he was struggling with the temperature and everything. He was running on adrenaline when we got there and started to fade pretty quick. By the time we actually got to him he was having trouble putting words together,” said Lt. Michael Kowal with St. George Fire Department.

In all, the man spent about 8 hours trying to attract help. Lt. Kowal says a scenario like this has the potential to go south really quick. Luckily, the man knew exactly what to do. Thinking on his feet, he used his flashlight to signal for help.

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“He was flashing the light into windows along the bank of the river and then a lady just happened to see it and called for help. 6 to 8 hours later we were able to get our highly trained rescue squads out there and get him in the boat,” Lt. Kowal explained.

Crews with the St. George Fire Protection District rescued a man and his dog from a  wooded...
Crews with the St. George Fire Protection District rescued a man and his dog from a wooded area along the Amite River on Jan. 17, 2022.(St. George Fire Protection District)

Experts say before heading off into the woods, it’s important to have something with you that can send a signal out, just in case you find yourself in a tough situation.

“If anybody is to go out in the woods, I suggest we bring some kind of signaling device. Flares, flashlights, a whistle, a horn, anything to attract attention to themself if they find themselves lost,” Lt. Kowal continued.

The man who got lost has a military background so if it can happen to him, the fire department says it could happen to anyone. He and his dog are home safe today.

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