"He had taken a spill and hit his head and was unconscious. Of course the fear and the anxiety starts to build a little bit,” said Kara Cotton, Boggs’ mother. Boggs is part of a mountain biking team, no stranger to the trails. Saturday, Cotton got a call no mother wants to get.
Enter Flight Officer Paramedic Matt Calcutt in the CHP helicopter -- already in the air, coming back from his second rescue of the day. "We're able to direct ground crews into his exact location,” said Calcutt.
Culvert Trail off Forest Hill road in Auburn -- terrain that's too rugged to land. Within a matter of minutes they had Boggs in what officers call a hoist.
“You fly with him, the patient on the outside of the aircraft to get to a point where you can bring them into the aircraft,” said Calcutt.
"I mean they do their job and they do it well, I couldn't ask for much more,” said Cotton. She said doctors are confident he'll make a full recovery. While Cotton calls the CHP air unit’s members heroes, the officers themselves are a little more humble about that title.
"For us it's our day-to-day job. We love what we do,” said Calcutt.
A mother, concerned and reassured, loves it too.
Because he has spleen damage, doctors want to keep Boggs at the hospital for a couple of days. According to his mother, he's talking and seems to be recovering well.
IMPORTANT NOTE REGARDING MEDIVAC FLIGHTS from Mother Lode Trails:
If you run, hike, ride horses or bikes on our trails and you are injured, you should know that many insurance companies do not pay for an air flight to a hospital. The cost can be $10,000 to $50,000. It is responsible and necessary for you to obtain air flight insurance. If you don't have insurance, and you can't afford a medivac flight, the taxpayers are on the hook for you. Our local medical airflight insurance through CalStar is very reasonable and can be obtained at a discount through many trails organizations. CLICK HERE to see more information on CalStar California Shock Trama Air Rescue.
If you would like to see the costs of medical flights in rural areas, this is a good article in The Atlantic magazine, "When the Only Ambulance Is a Helicopter"