Teens Rescued, Hospitalized After Rafting Down LA River During Rainstorm

lbfd water rescue

Photo courtesy of the Long Beach Fire Department.  

Two teenagers were pulled to safety by Long Beach’s Swift Water Rescue team from the Los Angeles River in North Long Beach after they decided to go rafting in the middle of Sunday’s winter rainstorm, according to fire officials.

The Long Beach Fire Department (LBFD) team responded to Long Beach Boulevard and the Los Angeles River at about 5:00PM, LBFD spokesman Jake Heflin.

“We dispatched resources at Long Beach Boulevard and the L.A. River to search for two individuals after their rafts were spotted empty in the river,” Heflin said.

Firefighters pulled one young man from the fast-moving current about 15 minutes later. At about 5:25PM, firefighters found the second teen who had managed to pull himself out of the water.

“They were evaluated by firefighters and transported to a hospital for treatment of possible exposure,” Heflin said.

Authorities said the rescued pair were 17 and 18 years old.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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Stephanie Rivera is the immigration and diversity reporter for the Long Beach Post. After graduating from CSULB with a degree in journalism, Stephanie worked for Patch Latino and City News Service before coming to the Long Beach Post in 2015.