Mental Health professionals assist police and fire to rescue man from Merrimack River

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A man was eventually rescued from the frigid Merrimack River Monday afternoon after a joint effort by police, fire an mental health professionals. Photo/Jeffrey Hastings

MANCHESTER, NH –  Manchester Fire and AMR responded to the base of the dam under the Amoskeag Bridge Monday for a report of a man in the river.

The first units arrived at 12:50 p.m. and found a man in the water and walking around the area of the dam, toward the island. The man reached the island at the same time rescue crews were arriving in boats that had been launched from the boat ramp near Delta Dental Stadium.
The man continued to elude the rescuers and run from one part of the island to another, and then back into the rapidly running river. Additional fire personnel was brought to the scene so that crews could be on both sides of the river and on the bridge above to track the man.
Rescuers worked in tandem to coax a man from the river Monday afternoon. Photo/Jeffrey Hastings

Firefighters with protective gear and personal floatation devices walked into the river towards the man who was running through the river and shortly stopping to rest on rocks. After about 1½ hours in the frigid water, the man stopped to take a rest and firefighters approached him. With the assistance of police officers, firefighters, and professionals from Manchester Mental Health the man was convinced to come to the shore on the east side of the river.

He was assisted up the embankment and walked to AMR medics standing by for his arrival. The man, soaked from being in the river for nearly two hours, said he was fine and did not want medical assistance. He was able to answer a series of questions correctly and had the right to refuse treatment.
Members from a Manchester Mental Health team spoke to him for an extended time, gave him water, and dry socks and convinced him to walk to the ambulance to get warm. The man was eventually transported to a local hospital for additional assessments.

About this Author

Jeffrey Hastings

Jeffrey Hastings is a freelance photojournalist and runs Manchester Information community Facebook page.