Hilton boy injured in rock fall

2013-08-15 00:00

A 14-YEAR-OLD Hilton college boy was seriously injured yesterday afternoon when a rock fell on him and partially severed his arm in the Drakensberg.

The teenager was on a school trip with other boys and two adults in the Tseke Tseke Pass near Cathedral Peak when the accident happened.

Although it was not immediately clear how he was injured, The Witness understands that a rock fell on him.

A rescue team comprising Mountain Club rescue members, police and paramedics was flown to the scene by an Oryx helicopter from 15 Squadron SAAF.

They pulled off a dramatic rescue under difficult conditions, including windy weather, to secure the teenager and transport him to hospital.

Mountain Club rescue convener Gavin Raubenheimer, who was at the scene, said hoisting the injured teen into the helicopter was a complicated process, especially for the pilots. “The South African air force pilot [Lieutenant-Colonel Graham Chisholm] did a good job flying, it was really a tight spot.”

Raubenheimer said the rescue team arrived at the scene at around 4.30 pm. “It took about 20 minutes for the paramedics to get him properly packaged and then he was hoisted by the helicopter and then transported to hospital.”

Steve Cooke of the Mountain Club South Africa said the pilot decided to fly directly to King Shaka airport.

By yesterday evening, the boy’s mother had flown from Johannesburg to visit him in hospital.

Hilton College marketing director Paul Guthrie confirmed in a statement that the Grade 9 Hilton boy was injured.

“Our prayers and thoughts are with him and his family,” he said.

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