New Jersey State Police troopers tracked a missing person's footprints in the snow and used their clothing and equipment to keep him warm as they rescued him in a wooded area late last month.
The rescue happened a few days before Christmas when the state police's Sussex station received a report of a man in an ultra-terrain vehicle (UTV) who had been missing for 24 hours in Stokes State Forest, the agency stated in a social media post. A search of the area was conducted, and troopers discovered UTV tracks in the forest.
Those tracks led to the UTV, which had been disabled by a downed log and boulders. Although the man wasn't with the vehicle, his footprints were visible.
Troopers followed the tracks to the man, who was laying face up on the ground, a short distance from his missing right boot. The man's breathing was labored, his body temperature had dropped significantly, and he was suffering from hypothermia. Their efforts were captured on a body-worn camera.
Quickly, the troopers pulled off their Class A winter blouses and draped them on the man. Ballistic vests were also put on the ground, so the man would have some protection from the icy ground.
Once more troopers reached the scene, they laid on top of the man in an effort to transfer body heat. The also administered sternum rubs.
Using a stokes basket, Sandyston firefighters finally were able to carry the man to an emergency UTV. He then was flown to the hospital, and he's now recovering at home.