Updated: Elderly woman missing in Harwich found safe

HARWICH – There was a large search underway for a missing elderly woman in Harwich Wednesday morning The woman went missing from the Miles Street / Bank Street area between 3 AM and 6 AM. She had been described as approximately 5’2”, 142 lbs. last seen wearing a black coat, black or brown slippers and carrying a tote bag and black purse. The Cape Cod Regional Tech Rescue Team was called out to assist in the search.

Update: 8:30 AM: Authorities report that the victim was found safe and is being evaluated by EMTs.

From Harwich Fire: Around 6:30 AM Wednesday morning, the Harwich Police responded to 122 Miles Street for a report of a missing elderly woman. Police conducted a brief search of the house and area, and requested the Fire Department to assist.

Upon receipt of the call, the Fire Department activated the Barnstable County Regional Technical Rescue Team and the Cape Cod Regional Law Enforcement Council Technical Rescue Team. A staging area was established at the School House lot in Harwich Port. Both teams are comprised of members of the Fire and Police Departments in Barnstable County and are trained in large area search and missing person procedures.

A unified command post was established and search teams were deployed throughout the neighborhood, in the wooden areas behind the houses, and various areas that were known to the individual. As part of the search procedure, social media and the town’s emergency notification system were used to make people aware this person was missing.

At approximately 8:30, Linda Lane, a Harwich Port resident who decided to assist with the search after receiving the emergency notification from the town, located the missing individual next to the Pilgrim Congregational Church. A 9-1-1 call to the Sheriff’s Department was made and resources responded to that location. The individual was reunited with family and transported to Cape Cod Hospital by ambulance.

“This was a textbook effort of how this type of operation should work.” said Fire Chief David LeBlanc. Harwich Fire and Police, the Regional teams, town Department of Public Works, and ultimately the community all worked together and a great outcome was achieved. “Without the emergency notification, and Mrs. Lane’s involvement, there is no telling how much longer it would have taken to find the individual.” said LeBlanc.

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