Man falls into Yarra River ‘blindly’ chasing pet dogs

A man has been rescued after he fell almost 30 metres down a steep embankment into Melbourne's Yarra River while chasing his runaway dogs in the dark.

Key points:

  • The man suffered minor cuts and abrasions
  • He ran "blindly" to chase the dogs, unaware of the terrain
  • Authorities found the man clinging to a log in the Yarra River

The 35-year-old had been walking his two dogs with his partner at Warringal Parklands in Heidelberg around 9:00pm last night when the pets ran off.

He chased after the dogs but fell and rolled down the steep embankment before making a splash in the river.

His partner called emergency services and fire crews arrived shortly afterwards to find the man clinging to a log.

A dog looks on as rescuers save its owner after he fell down an embankment into the Yarra.

Firefighters used ropes and a harness to haul the man to safety.

The man's partner and two dogs were also rescued by fire crews.

The man received cuts and abrasions and was left feeling cold after being in the water.

Two small dogs ae held on leads by their owner who stands next to a firefighter.

Metropolitan Fire Brigade incident controller Brett Cowcher said the man was lucky he did not suffer more serious injuries.

"We were told he ran blindly in there chasing his dogs and was unaware of the terrain," he said.

"Considering it was quite dark and my understanding is he had no lights so he wasn't expecting the ledge to be there.

"It wasn't a straight drop but it was a very steep angle, approximately 45 degrees or more."

Mr Cowcher said it served as a warning for people to be more careful.

"You need to take your time. If something happens, you've got to walk slowly," he said.

Firefighters stand in a row holding a rope while rescuing a man who fell into the Yarra River. A man is taken by paramedics on a stretcher as his dogs walk alongside after he fell down an embankment.

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