08/01/2007

Coastguard rescues women from cliff fall

Two women have been rescued by the Coastguard after falling down a cliff edge on the Isle of Wight.

Solent Coastguard received a call just before 9pm on Sunday evening after two women in their early 20s failed to return from walking a dog that afternoon.

Coastguard search and rescue teams from Ventnor, Ryde Bembridge, Needles and Newport were called out and Coastguard helicopter India Juliet was also scrambled. Police and fire crew were also involved in the search.

An extensive search was undertaken from St Catherines Down to St Catherines Lighthouse in weather, which was described as "atrocious".

The two women were eventually found in a gulley shortly before midnight and were winched from the scene by helicopter and taken to St Mary's Hospital.

Both women had suffered minor cuts and bruises and were cold, wet and tired. The dog, a collie, is now back with its owners.

Mick Forsyth-Caffrey, IOW Sector Manager, said: "This was an extremely difficult search in atrocious weather, and arduous conditions. It involved all the Coastguard teams located on the Isle of Wight.

"We are all extremely pleased that we were able to locate the ladies, and they are now in the care of the medical authorities."

(KMcA)


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