Page last updated at 09:38 GMT, Saturday, 15 May 2010 10:38 UK

Lifeboat crew from Cornwall praised for rescue on land

A lifeboat crew from Cornwall has been praised by the RNLI's operations chief for a rescue that took place on land.

Michael Vlasto said the crew members from Looe were recognised for their initiative for helping a woman who injured herself on ice in December.

Crew members got stretchers and blankets from the lifeboat station and looked after her until she was airlifted to hospital.

Mr Vlasto said the rescue "reflects very well on Looe lifeboat station".

Hail 'stream'

The woman, who had slipped on ice and injured herself on 23 December, was found lying on a path screaming by helmsman Clive Palfrey, who on his way to work.

Mr Palfrey said he called 999 but was told there would be a delay in getting an ambulance to her because of the poor weather.

He said: "It then started hailing, and the water was like a stream running down the hill straight down the woman's back."

He paged the crew and they went to the scene with stretchers and blankets from the boathouse.

They put the woman on a stretcher and carried her up the hill where she was put in a house to keep warm.

After the ambulance was delayed again because of a road crash, a helicopter from RNAS Culdrose was dispatched and landed at the town primary school.

The crew then carried the woman to the school where she was flown to Plymouth's Derriford Hospital about three hours after she was found.

In his commendation to the crew, charity operations director Mr Vlasto said: "Clive's initiative, followed by the commitment to serving their local community, demonstrated by the crew who responded to the call reflects very well on Looe lifeboat station."

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