Injured walker in airlift drama

Donegal Mountain Rescue Team were involved a dramatic rescue at Sliabh Liag last week when an stricken walker fell and broke her leg.

Donegal Mountain Rescue Team were involved a dramatic rescue at Sliabh Liag last week when an stricken walker fell and broke her leg.

Two units of the team were called to the incident which happened at approximately 2pm.

Two hill walkers in their 60s, who are understood to be from Dublin, called for assistance when the woman fell and injured her leg at an area of the walk known as the Eagles Nest.

One unit of the team arrived at the scene and were later supported by a second team as well as the coastguard and cliff rescue services from Killybegs and a coastguard helicopter from Shannon.

Donegal Mountain Rescue Team PRO, Brain Murray says the situation they faced was a difficult situation due to the victims location, the cold temperatures, high winds and visibility.

Brian explained that the first thing they had to do was provide shelter for the injured woman who was suffering hypothermia and exposure.

“It was clear she had sometime of fracture when we arrived. Also by that time she was on the mountain for about and hour and 45 minutes. It was pretty cold with high winds and where she was was pretty exposed,” he explains.

After providing protection in a “storm shelter” and treated for her injured leg with a splint, a coastguard helicopter was scrambled from Shannon.

It circled the area a number of times in an attempt to lift the stricken walker and her partner but cloud closing in on the area made it difficult to carry out the operation safely.

Brian explained it was then the DMR Team placed the woman on a stretcher and walked to to an area below the cloud line to allow the airlift to take place and this was carried out successfully.

She was brought to Sligo hospital and treated for an ankle broken in two places.

In another operation on Thursday morning, the team were called into action once again to help assist with an injured school pupils in Glenveagh National Park.

Mr Murray said a large of students from a Letterkenny school were walking on the Bridal Path when a girl suffered an ankle injury.

The team and the Rangers at Glenveagh arrived at the scene and the 13-year-old was removed to safety and treated in A&E in Letterkenny Hospital for a badly sprained ankle.

As well as the dedicated work the team DMR team carry out on a volunteer basis they were also successful in completing their three year team assessment with flying colours last weekend. It was conducted by senior members of the Kerry and Mourne Mountain Rescue Teams who inspected their capabilities, equipment, documentation and vehicles.