Building dedicated to first aid in the Gorge opening soon

Posted at 5:08 PM, Feb 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-25 06:07:37-05

POWELL COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — Thousands of hikers and campers from across the country visit Red River Gorge every year.

There's a dedicated army of Search and Rescue team members from several counties who make sure they get home safely if they get into trouble.

Now, the Powell County squad has a building to call their own.

"We just got it donated, so this is going to be our First Aid building here in the Gorge," said Johnson.

Johnson estimates they've worked more than 50 missions each of the past two years. That's why acquiring this building in Middle Fork Campground was so important.

"They gave us a new sink. We'll have a table and chair set. Cots of course, aid table, and all our supplies," said Johnson.

It's a triage area of sorts right in the campground that rescuers can take injured or dehydrated hikers. She says the location is ideal.

"Because we're around a lot of people. We're right in the middle of all of the trails, and we can get to the trails twice as fast too," said Johnson. "So we'll be able to treat them here on the site, and we can evaluate if we need to call EMS because our EMS stays so busy."

Johnson says there's still work to be done to finish the building which was donated by the state. However, it should be open before the end of March. That would be just in time for when the Gorge will start flooding with hikers and campers.

Johnson says the building will be dedicated to Don Fig, the founder of the Powell County Search and Rescue team.