Putnam County Sheriff Donald B. Smith reports that at approximately 5:25 p.m. on Sunday Jan. 1, his department received a 9-1-1 dispatch reporting three lost hikers in a wooded area in the Garrison area of the Town of Philipstown. Sheriff’s deputies, along with members of the Garrison and Continental Village Fire Departments, Philipstown and Garrison Volunteer Ambulance Corps, TransCare Paramedics, State Police and Putnam County’s Bureau of Emergency Services responded to the area of Route 403. Putnam County’s 9-1-1 Center received a transferred cell phone call, from one of the lost hikers reporting that she, a friend and his eight year-old child were lost in a wooded area off of Route 403. They told the emergency dispatcher that they came from New York City for a recreational hike on trails and that they had sufficient food and water.
Upon arrival of emergency responders, a command post was established using the incident command system. A call was placed for a police K-9 unit from the Westchester County Police Department. Sgt. Chris Simone along with Officer Brian Tierney and his canine partner, “Saratoga” responded to assist in the search. They, along with search and rescue teams consisting of firefighters and uniformed deputies, scoured the wooded area for more than three hours while a New York City Police Department helicopter was preparing to join in as needed.
At approximately 8:45 p.m., the police K-9 search team located the three hikers. They were escorted from the woods to an awaiting ambulance. The three were evaluated by attending emergency medical technicians and refused further medical attention. They returned to their parked car and left to return home.