Rescuers sledge the injured snowboarder from the mountain. Photo: Patterdale MRT

Rescuers sledge the injured snowboarder from the mountain. Photo: Patterdale MRT

Rescuers had to battle through shoulder-deep snow to reach a man who suffered serious spinal injuries while snowboarding on the slopes of England’s third-highest mountain.

The 24-year-old from Ambleside was boarding in Keppel Cove on Helvellyn on Saturday when the incident happened.

Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team was called out about 3.30pm and its volunteers made their way to the site. A spokesperson said: “Team members battled through snow which had blown into knee-high and sometimes waist- and shoulder-high drifts.

“When they arrived on scene the man was assessed by the team’s doctor who administered morphine and Entonox to relieve the pain.

“The man had symptoms associated with possible severe spinal injuries and the team therefore requested a helicopter to provide a smooth evacuation.

“The Coastguard helicopter turned back due to poor reported weather to the South of the Lakes and the team therefore sledged the man all the way to the mines at Greenside. He was then transferred to a rescue team Land Rover fitted with winter snow chains and driven slowly down the mountain track.

“The team then went to assist with a road traffic accident involving three cars, one of which was on its roof. The cars were blocking the road and preventing an ambulance from reaching the team to take the injured snowboarder to hospital.”

The rescue of the snowboarder involved 17 Patterdale MRT members for more than seven hours. Four team members from the Royal Air Force MRT also helped in the incident.

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