Man in lucky escape after fall near cliff edge

Man in lucky escape after fall near cliff edge

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Doolin Coast Guard and ambulance paramedics at a previous incident on the cliff trail – File Photo

A young man had a lucky escape yesterday after he suffered a fall and landed just feet from the edge of a 600ft high cliff.

The 21-year-old, understood to be from Co Donegal, was walking along a trail at the Cliffs of Moher in Co Clare when he suffered a fall and was injured.

It’s understood the man stumbled over a ledge and fell forward, stopping just a ‘few feet’ from a sheer drop to the ocean. The man suffered a dislocated knee in the fall.

The alarm was raised at 2.15pm when the ambulance service received a call reporting a person had been injured on the coastal trail south of the main viewing platform at the Cliffs of Moher.

The Doolin unit of the Irish Coast Guard was alerted as the area is not accessible by road vehicles. An ambulance was also sent to the scene.

Coast Guard volunteers reached the location by crossing a field and found the casualty on the ground close to the cliff edge.

After being treated by ambulance paramedics, Coast Guard personnel transported the injured man the short distance to the ambulance. The casualty was taken to University Hospital Limerick for treatment.

Warnings have been issued in the past about the dangers of straying from the official walking trail that follows the cliffs from Doolin south to Hags Head.

The Doolin unit of the Irish Coast Guard unit has recovered numerous casualties in recent years some of whom have had to be airlifted to hospital with serious injuries.

As the walk is not accessible by land vehicles, the Coast Guard has to used a custom built stretcher to transport casualties across fields to waiting ambulances.

The Cliffs of Moher Coast Walk was officially opened in 2013 and has proven to be a massive attraction in Clare. The project is a collaborative effort between Clare County Council, Clare Local Development Company, The National Trails Office, Fáilte Ireland, the local community and almost 40 landowners along the route.

The Rural Recreation Office in Co Clare along with management at the Cliffs of Moher have repeatedly warned visitors not to stray from the official trail and to ensure they are properly equipped before venturing out.

“We would always advise people to stick to the official path and not stray from that. The official path is the inner path while the bare earth track is not a path. This has been created by walkers who stray outside the main path,” a spokesman said.

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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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