22-Month-Old Survives Terrifying Fall Down Arkansas Embankment: 'It's a Miracle,' Fire Captain Says
Firefighters say a 22-month-old baby girl is lucky to be alive after tumbling more than 30 feet down a steep embankment above Lake Atalanta in northwest Arkansas.
At around 8:20 p.m. on Wednesday the toddler, her mother and her mother’s friend were taking a stroll in the hilly area when the mother lost control of the stroller, NBC News reported.
Within seconds, the carrier went flying down the ridge, which stopped near a body of water, according to the outlet. The mother and her friend ran down the dangerous embankment chasing after the stroller and catching the small child.
That’s when the stroller miraculously was stopped by a tree, with the child still nestled safely inside, NBC News reported.
However, the mother and the other individual found themselves stuck at the bottom. The mother broke her ankle in the process.
The Rogers Fire Department quickly arrived on the scene and helped the trio to safety.
The mother had to be lifted out of the embankment with a basket.
“[We] packaged her into a basket and ended up using the ropes and a mechanical advantage to go ahead and retrieve the patient and bring her and the child and the other bystander back up over the embankment,” Rogers Fire Captain Josh Chapman told KFSM-TV.
Chapman went on to explain to the newstation that because they do not make harnesses for small children, firefighters ended up “taking and securing her pretty well to one of our rescuers.”
The friend and the child walked away from the incident uninjured.
“All in all it was a win because nobody had any permanent injuries,” Chapman told KFSM-TV.
Chapman admitted that the child’s survival is a “miracle.”
“Not to overplay anything, it’s a bit of a miracle that the tree caught her just right and kept her from going into the water,” Chapman told NBC News. “You can call it luck, divine intervention, a miracle, whatever you like.”
The Rogers Fire Department did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
The identities of the mother, child and friend have not been made public.