Page last updated at 13:02 GMT, Sunday, 11 January 2009

Rescuers injured helping climbers

Ian Henderson, of Llanberis Mountain Rescue, decribes operation and injuries to rescuers

Eight rescuers were hurt as they helped two injured climbers down from near the summit of Snowdon in a dramatic night time operation.

Forty eight rescuers battled ice and gales to help the 27-year-old men to safety just after midnight on Sunday.

Ian Henderson, of Llanberis Mountain Rescue, said one of the injured rescuers had possible broken ribs.

The walkers suffered fractures in a 100m (328ft) fall after being blown off an icy path in winds of up to 110mph.

The wind strength and low cloud meant the rescue helicopter could not get close to where the men were stranded.

It is understood one suffered a suspected fractures of the wrist, fingers and femur and the other was believed to have a broken collarbone and ankle.

They had to hobble down the mountain in splints as it was deemed too dangerous to carry them on stretchers.

One of the guys who had been visited in hospital this morning was described as looking like he had done 12 rounds with Mike Tyson
Ian Henderson, mountain rescue

They are now being treated at Ysbyty Gwynedd in Bangor.

Four mountain rescue teams - Llanberis, Ogwen, Aberglaslyn and RAF Valley - were called out to take part in the eight-hour rescue operation near the 3,560ft peak on Saturday evening.

The walkers had fallen near the upper part of the Pyg Track, which leads to Snowdon's summit, but were able to call for help.

It took around three hours for rescuers to reach them because of the conditions and darkness.

They then had to hobble down the mountainside, helped by the rescuers.

"They just got on with the job and didn't make a fuss," said Mr Henderson.

A snow-covered Snowdon
The walkers fell 100ft (30m) from near the summit of Snowdon

"Eight of the rescuers were hurt because they were blown over. One girl was blown 20ft (6m). One of the rescuers has torn ligaments in his ankle and another is being checked over for suspected broken ribs."

He said the two walkers, who were very experienced and well equipped, were recovering well.

"One of the guys who had been visited in hospital this morning was described as looking like he had done 12 rounds with Mike Tyson," added Mr Henderson.

Earlier rescues

Before the rescue of the pair, members of Llanberis mountain rescue team also had to guide to safety a stranded party of five from the Leicester area, who had become stuck 2,000ft high.

They were detected by infra-red equipment aboard an RAF Sea King helicopter based at Valley in Anglesey.

A 14-year-old boy who had becoming separated from his father on the mountain was also found after making his own way down.

And a stranded party of five from the Leicester area, who had become stuck 2,000ft up, were guided to safety after being detected by infra-red equipment on the helicopter.

Mr Henderson appealed for walkers to check the weather forecast and mountain conditionsbefore attempting to climb Snowdon.

He said they expected it to remain icy over the coming days and urged people to dress appropriately and carry the correct equipment.

Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Rescue warning on Snowdon streams
27 Mar 06 |  North West Wales
Snowdon climbers led to safety
21 Mar 06 |  North West Wales
Snowdon rescues lead to warning
29 Aug 06 |  North West Wales

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific