A man has been killed after falling nearly 1,000ft while climbing Ben Nevis in ‘fierce’ conditions.
Two more people are in hospital after rescue teams rushed to Scotland’s highest mountain to help 17 people descend from the summit yesterday afternoon.
Police have confirmed that a 28-year-old man was killed following a fall of nearly 1,000 feet.
Two others, aged 27 and 29, were treated for minor injuries after being rushed to hospital.
Other members of an army group, believed to be from the Edinburgh area, were also caught up in the rescue mission.
A total of 17 people – including the dozen military personnel – were either airlifted from the 4,413ft mountain by Coastguard search and rescue helicopters or left the hill by some of the approximately 40 rescuers who went to their aid.
Members of the Lochaber and Glencoe mountain rescue teams – along with police – were rushed to Ben Nevis after the alarm was raised at around 2.15pm on Tuesday.
Donald Paterson, the Lochaber team’s assistant team manager, said the conditions on the mountain were “Classic Alpines – springtime in the glen but above the snow line, all solid and an ice ax and crampons are essential, and knowing how to use them”.
He said: “This guy had fallen conservatively from about 300 yards.
“Then others went to help him and they too got in trouble.
“One had a broken ankle and another multiple abrasions. As the night progressed, conditions worsened.
“Party members could have been better prepared for the conditions.
“We would like to express our condolences to the family and friends of the deceased.”
The eight-hour operation was triggered after the man dove to his death at Red Burn on the west side of the mountain.
He and his party, non-members of the armed forces, had descended Ben Nevis after reaching the summit.
Glencoe MRT assistant crew chief Brian Bathurst described the conditions as “fierce”.
“The snowfields are covered in ice and are quite deadly,” he said.
“One slip and you’ll go far.
“The conditions last night were very difficult – in addition to the ice, there were very strong winds and rain. The helicopters did an amazing job.
A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “At approximately 2.15pm on Tuesday March 8, police were made aware of concerns about a number of people in difficulty in Ben Nevis.
“Colleagues from the emergency and mountain rescue services intervened to help 17 people get off the mountain.
“We can confirm that a 28-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene, while two other men, aged 29 and 27, were treated for minor injuries in hospital.
“There are no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death and a full report will be submitted to the tax attorney.”
The death was the third death in the Highlands in less than a week.
An army spokesman said: “On Tuesday a small number of soldiers gave support to the stranded marchers in Ben Nevis.
“They helped the group until the mountain rescue and emergency services were able to reach them.”
They confirmed that two soldiers suffered minor injuries during the descent and were later treated in hospital.
This story originally appeared on The Sun and has been reproduced here with permission.
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