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San Diego sheriff's deputies from the Santee station and San Diego Fire were called in to rescue a lost hiker from the El Capitan Open Space Preserve in Lakeside early Sunday evening, March 2.

According to lieutenant Christine Robbins, a single female hiker called authorities for assistance when she became lost during a hike. The sheriff's helicopter was called in for the search and located the woman "sliding on her backside and close to a cliff."

The victim complied with orders from the helicopter to stop and remain put, and it was determined that due to the terrain and oncoming darkness that a hoist to lift her out of her predicament would be the most efficient approach.

San Diego Fire arrived to complete the rescue operation, and the victim was flown to a fire station in Barona before being transported to Grossmont Hospital for evaluation of her injuries.

Last August, the sheriff's department announced a new policy of seeking reimbursement for the rescue cost of reckless hikers guilty of violating federal, state, or local laws that would have led to the necessity of their rescue. Authorities in this instance have not indicated that the hiker was guilty of any wrongdoing that would subject her to having to pay for her rescue costs.

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