On July 25, 2008 experienced outdoorsman Rejean Able, who was on a six week wilderness trek in Nunavik, located in the remote Ungava Peninsula of Northern Quebec, was rescued using his SPOT Satellite Messenger after a canoe accident left him stranded without supplies. As he was approaching a series of rapids, Mr. Able lost control of his canoe and capsized. Submerged with his feet caught under the seat of the canoe, he was able to free himself and swim to the embankment, but in the process lost his canoe and all off his supplies. He also lost his rifle which he had taken for protection against wolf packs known to be in the area.
Mr. Able had his SPOT Satellite Messenger in his pocket which he was able to use to send a 9-1-1 emergency distress message with his GPS location. His GPS coordinates were immediately dispatched to a GEOS International Emergency Response Center who alerted the nearest Inuit Village to Mr. Able, along with his need for rescue. A surveying helicopter in the area was able to assist local authorities and airlift Mr. Able to safety.
“SPOT literally saved my life,” said Rejean Able. “Without it I would be dead.” Upon rescue, Mr. Able learned that the location of his accident was at least a 15 day walk in to the nearest village.
After returning to his home in the Mont Tremblant region of Quebec, Mr. Able is recovering from his injuries and the trauma associated with the accident but is thankful to be alive. “I am telling all of my friends who like to venture in the wilderness to make sure they take a SPOT Satellite Messenger with them. It is inexpensive and can save their life”.
Used with permission from SPOT LLC