Injured man airlifted from Curracloe beach
A man who sustained a severe ankle injury in a fall from a tree at Raven Forest in Curracloe last weekend, was airlifted by an Irish Coastguard helicopter to the orthopaedic unit of Waterford University Hospital.
The man was in the forest with his wife and two daughters when the accident happened last Saturday afternoon. He suffered a bad fracture of his ankle and was in excruciating pain.
Members of Curracloe Coastguard were alerted at approximately 2.30 pm and were asked to go to the scene and to use their knowledge of the area to help a HSE ambulance crew locate the casualty. They met the man's daughter on the path and she took them to the scene of the accident.
An ambulance paramedic assessed the injured man and administered pain relief at the scene. In the meantime, the Marine Rescue Control Centre had dispatched a Coastguard helicopter which was involved in an exercise in the area.
The helicopter lowered down a trained paramedic who assisted the ambulance crew and decided that the best approach was to take the patient by air to Waterford Hospital rather than having him face a journey by road in an ambulance.
Coastguard members on the ground cordoned off an area of the beach to allow the helicopter to land safely, away from members of the public. A stretcher was lowered and the paramedics took some time to stabilise the man's injured leg and secure the patient on the stretcher before it was carried with the help of the coastguard team to the boardwalk at the side of the forest and lifted over a fence and down some distance to the waiting helicopter.
The helicopter left the scene with the injured man at approximately 4 pm, transporting him to Waterford Hospital for treatment.
Curracloe Coastguard station officer Frank Murphy said the rescue operation had to be carried out slowly and carefully as it was a very serious ankle injury and the stretcher carriers had to negotiate obstacles such as fallen tree trunks along rough terrain before reaching the boardwalk.
Mr. Murphy said the rescue was an exercise in team work between the coastguard ground crew, the HSE crew and the Coastguard helicopter crew.