Truck stuck in snow with teenagers

March 16, 1991
Pine Cove Road to Hemet

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By Bill Blaschko, M.D.

I’m sure the many Southern Californians reading this will remember the welcome series of storms last March that helped avert a serious drought situation. As is so often the case though, what was a relief for many, was a problem for a few individuals.

Late in the evening on March 16, RMRU was called out to rescue four teenagers who were overdue after attempting to drive up a dirt road from Hemet to Pine Cove. There were two vehicles with a boy and girl in each. I have driven the route they were on in good weather and found it to be a fun drive although quite rugged in places. With the thick layer of snow on the ground it was easy for me to imagine how their vehicles (only one was four wheel drive) could get stuck. After getting stuck in the snow a couple of miles short of their destination, the boys walked to Pine Cove, called for help, and returned to the girls who were waiting in the cars.

RMRU members met with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy in Pine Cove and P.J. Hunt, our team member most experienced in driving in snow conditions, was sent down the road to investigate. P.J. found the road without any difficulty but there was no sign of the missing subjects. As we began to search local area the teenagers might have strayed to, the Sheriff’s Deputy re-contacted the parent. We found out that all four of subjects had walked to a friend’s house in Pine Cove and had been warm and secure the entire time we were searching.

With the help of a shovel, a tow strap and some elbow grease we got the team van un-stuck and everyone headed home.