Sunday 18 March 2018

Avalanche claims a third victim

The pair died after an avalanche in the Chalamain Gap area of the Cairngorms
The pair died after an avalanche in the Chalamain Gap area of the Cairngorms

A man injured in an avalanche in the Scottish Highlands which killed another man and a woman has died, police have said.

The trio were airlifted from the Chalamain Gap area of the Cairngorms to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary shortly after 12.30pm on Thursday, where a man and the woman died.

The second man, left in a critical condition, died from his injuries, Northern Constabulary said. His family was being informed.

Police, Cairngorm Mountain Rescue Team, search and rescue dogs, RAF Lossiemouth's rescue team and a helicopter were involved in Thursday's operation.

David Rutledge, the training officer for Cairngorm Mountain Rescue Team, who was involved in controlling the operation from the team's base, said: "We started mobilising within 15 minutes of the call coming through. We had a helicopter here incredibly quickly. We had three doctors available straight away who were able to get to the scene."

Mr Rutledge said two parties of six were involved in the incident Those not taken to hospital were walked off the hill.

Scotland's First Minister expressed his sadness at the latest fatal incident in the Highlands: "This is another stark and tragic reminder of the dangers on our mountains. They are one of the most beautiful places on Earth but they can also be inherently dangerous with treacherous and changeable conditions."

Meanwhile, Central Scotland Police have urged anyone planning a climb or hike to "carefully consider their actions", following another rescue operation in a different mountain region.

A Royal Navy helicopter was dispatched to Ben More, Crianlarich, around 4.20pm when a couple contacted police to say they were stranded. The helicopter was unable to reach them due to extreme weather in the area but Killin Mountain Rescue Team found them at about 9.15pm. A 25-year-old man and 21-year-old woman, from Lancashire, were uninjured.

A police spokesman said: "There have been several serious incidents in the Scottish mountains over recent days and weeks. We would urge anyone considering visiting the mountains to carefully consider their actions, ensure they are properly equipped, experienced and aware of what to do in the event of difficulties."

Press Association

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