“It’s just a prank bro,” is the last thing that rescue personnel want to hear after wasting their time and resources when dealing with a possible avalanche. Two Bear Air Rescue, a privately-funded search and rescue organization based in Whitefish, Montana, announced last week that it responded to a nighttime snowmobile accident near Edith Peak. Apparently, the snowmobiler had struck a steel road closure gate at high speed, leaving the victim severely injured. So why was the man riding so fast in the dark?

Well, it turned out that his friends called him earlier and said they were trapped under a pile of snow after an avalanche. In his hurry to rescue them, the snowmobiler ran headfirst into the gate and was thrown from his vehicle.

“The man had called 911 earlier to report the avalanche after his friends had told him they were partially buried,” Two Bear Air Rescue stated. “He did not have a good location of the avalanche but headed out to the general area high on the mountain. While en-route the  man failed to see the steel gate in the dark and hit it at a high rate of speed. The man was thrown from the snowmobile after impacting the handlebars and snowmobile with his chest. The man was unable to call for help so authorities were unaware that there was an additional person in the area.”

Luckily for him, a rescue helicopter looking for the avalanche victims just happened to find him lying in the snow. He was discovered severely injured and hypothermic before being airlifted to a hospital. The rescue helicopter then continued looking for the supposed avalanche victims until they were informed that it was a hoax. The US Forest Service later met with two men on snowmobiles, believed to be the ones who were pulling the prank. It is not yet known if charges will be pressed against them.

Moral of the story? Pranks are best left to trick candles or fake vomit puddles. Don’t do something that can hurt others.

Image screenshot of video by Jim Pierce on YouTube

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