KCFD: Woman fell off edge of Hwy 178 into canyon

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The Kern County Fire Department says a woman jumped out of a moving vehicle and fell over the edge of Highway 178 about 4 miles east of the mouth of Kern River Canyon.

The KCFD says Blanca Pena, 37, jumped out of a moving vehicle and fell about 75 feet down on Highway 178 just west of the Richbar campground, sustaining serious injuries. During the rescue operation they utilized multiple rope rescue systems and tended to the patient's injuries.

The department has not said why Pena jumped. 

The fire department says they determined the best route for extrication was to hoist the patient by helicopter due to the steep terrain. The Kern County Sheriff's helicopter was dispatched and successfully hoisted the patient out and to an awaiting ambulance at the entrance of the canyon on Highway 178. 

The patient was taken to Kern Medical Center.

California Highway Patrol had Highway 178 closed down for approximately one and a half hours.

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