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CaptainVertigo
2011-10-31 23:37:26
"Could it be Piped Underground?" from CaptainVertigo Contract pics
Picture: Could it be Piped Underground? (Contract pics)

16 taken from Wicklow mountains
Mountain rescue teams came to the aid of 16 people who got into difficulties in Co Wicklow yesterday.

The rescue teams worked through the night in two separate incidents.

The first rescue involved a family group of 5 who found themselves in trouble while on a walk near Djouce Mountain at about lunchtime. They were spotted sheltering behind a wall by rescue volunteers who were out in the area.

The group was escorted back across a river to a forest track and their cars.

The second incident involved an experienced group of 11 hikers who got into trouble while walking near Glenmacnass waterfall yesterday afternoon.

The group realised that the river had swollen to such a degree that they were unable to find a safe place to cross it. A call was made to the rescue services at about 8pm and over 40 members of Dublin & Wicklow Mountain Rescue and the Glen of Imaal Mountain Rescue quickly responded to a remote location just south of the Sally Gap.

The volunteers managed to make their way to the group to assist them. A break in the weather around 4.30am allowed rescue personnel to start moving the stranded group to safety. The evacuation involved providing roped security measures on three rivers and leading the group across the rough and treacherous terrain to safety.

At approximately 6.30am, the last member of the group reached a waiting mountain rescue 4x4 and was driven down a track to the rescue base. (Irish Times October 24, 2011)

DAVID HERMAN'S LETTER to IRISH TIMES 31st October 2011
Sir, – There is an ironic background to the story “16 taken from Wicklow mountains” (Breaking News, October 24th). The members of the hillwalking club who had to be rescued near Glenmacnass in Co Wicklow belong to the same club that offered €10,000 to the Wicklow Mountains National Park authorities to fund a footbridge above Glenmacnass Waterfall. This footbridge, had it been constructed, would have saved these walkers (and their rescuers) much trauma. However, the National Park spurned the offer on three grounds, one of which unbelievably was for safety considerations! I suspect that the real reason for the refusal is that the National Park has been primarily designated (except at Glendalough) for conservation rather than recreation, even though this is highly inappropriate in a mountain area so close to a large conurbation. To allow a footbridge at Glenmacnass would therefore have set an undesirable precedent.

Irish walkers, always prepared to be grateful for crumbs, have weakly acquiesced. However, don’t expect these meek ones to inherit the earth, specifically and part of Irish earth. – Yours, etc,

DAVID HERMAN
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