Saturday 23 September 2017

Teen airlifted off mountain after suffering serious fall

A mountain rescue team carrying an injured pilgrim to an Air Corps helicopter from Croagh Patrick, Co Mayo, yesterday.
A mountain rescue team carrying an injured pilgrim to an Air Corps helicopter from Croagh Patrick, Co Mayo, yesterday.
Caroline Crawford

Caroline Crawford

A TEENAGE pilgrim taking part in the annual Reek Sunday walk at Croagh Patrick had to be airlifted to hospital yesterday after suffering a serious fall.

The teenage boy was near the summit when the incident occurred and had to be taken from the mountain by the Air Corps. While his injuries were described as "quite severe", they are not believed to be life- threatening.

A total of three people were removed from the mountain by helicopter yesterday during the pilgrimage which saw over 12,000 people make the climb.

At 11am, an 83-year-old woman was airlifted from the mountain and brought to the Order of Malta field hospital which was operating at the base of the mountain.

Almost immediately after transferring the first patient, the medivac service was scrambled to assist the teenager who fell. A decision was taken to transfer him immediately to Castlebar Hospital.

"He was very lucky, he suffered a bad fall. We normally wouldn't do a flight to hospital but would take any patient to our own assessment unit. But the decision was made by the advanced paramedic on board to go directly to Castlebar," said Eamon Berry, the Order of Malta officer in charge.

At 2pm, an Italian man was airlifted from halfway up the mountain and brought to the Order of Malta field hospital. More than 20 other pilgrims were injured and were walked off the mountain by Order of Malta volunteers.

Mr Berry said casualties were significantly down on previous years with good weather conditions a major factor.

Irish Independent

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