Ames responders save woman from falling off Dayton bridge

An Ames woman was heroically rescued from a bridge during the early morning hours on Thursday thanks to the efforts of local responders.

According to Ames Police Sergeant Joel Congdon, Union Pacific Railroad contacted authorities at 1:27 a.m. Thursday when a female was seen outside the west railing of the Dayton Avenue bridge that hovers above the train tracks. Officers responded to find a distraught woman grasping the railing.

Congdon noted that the woman was compliant with the officers’ attempts to help her from the bridge.

Officers physically held the woman as responders from the Ames Fire Department drove a ladder truck down an access road that runs adjacent to the below tracks. Once the truck was in place, Ames PD officers were able to climb up the ladder and secure the woman in a safety harness. Firefighters then lowered the woman and officers to safety.

Congdon expressed an immense amount of appreciation to the officers and firefighters that helped save the life of the woman. “Honestly, this is like the best-case scenario, and this is what people pay us to do,” he stated. “You see something, and you have to take action. [The first officer] basically had to slide his hand between the metal fencing and the concrete wall to grab ahold of her. When more [officers] showed up, they all took a turn holding her, while also relaying information from the people who were down on the railroad level. There were a lot of moving parts.”

According to Congdon, the rescue also highlights the importance of a fast response by patrol officers who are summoned to such an urgent situation. “The officer that got there first was only about a block away when the call came out,” he explained. “Having someone there that quick was just really fortunate.”

The woman, who remains unnamed, was transported to Mary Greeley Medical Center for evaluation.

One Comment

  1. Stacy said:

    That woman was fortunate to have such a speedy reaction. What happened that she got that way in the first place?

    April 9, 2021

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