Page last updated at 14:03 GMT, Saturday, 1 May 2010 15:03 UK

Stag party rescue after Newquay hotel's cove lift fall


Mobile phone footage shows firemen arriving by boat to rescue the men

Six men on a stag weekend in Cornwall had to be rescued when a hotel lift they were in plummeted 100ft (30m).

A total of 85 emergency service workers were involved in the rescue at the Hotel Victoria in Newquay on Friday evening.

The lift transports hotel guests to a small cove below the cliffs.

A 42-year-old man from Surrey is in the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro with a leg injury. Two others had minor injuries.

An investigation has begun into what happened.

The six men were part of a group of nine from Surrey who were in Newquay for a double stag party.

Both grooms were in the lift when the accident happened.

One of the group, Neil McCracken, said initially the lift had become trapped between two floors before it fell.

Another, Carl White, described the incident as "terrifying".

Lift door buckled

Jamie Luke, general manager at the hotel, said staff first tried unsuccessfully to lower the lift to the ground floor manually.

"The lift hit the fall arrestor and in doing so we believe overshot past the beach ground level," he said.

A Maritime and Coastguard Agency spokesman said the men were trapped after the impact buckled the lift door.

Neil McCracken and Carl White said the incident happened "pretty quickly"

Because the incident happened shortly before high tide, the only access to the cove was from the sea.

Fire crews had to be transferred to the cove by Newquay's two inshore lifeboats, with coastguard cliff rescue teams standing by.

The men were freed and taken to Newquay harbour by lifeboat, before one, 42-year-old Stephen Dinsdale from Walton-on-Thames, was transferred to hospital by ambulance.

Devon and Cornwall Police and the Health and Safety Executive said they were investigating the incident.

Tracey Hawke Treneer, from Falmouth Coastguard, said it was a "miracle" no-one was seriously hurt.

Mr Luke said he was proud of the way the hotel staff had dealt with a "stressful and serious" matter.

"We would also like to express our sincere thanks for the speedy and professional response from all the emergency services involved in this unprecedented accident," he added.

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