Northern Ireland

Man airlifted to hospital after falling on rocks near Ardglass

A man has been airlifted to hospital after falling on rocks and into the sea on the County Down coast near Ardglass.

An Irish Coastguard helicopter and lifeboat crews were involved in the rescue near Sheepland Harbour.

The man was taken to Musgrave Park Hospital in Belfast and later transferred to the Royal Victoria Hospital.

Alan Pritchard from Belfast Coastguard said the man had fallen in a remote area which made the rescue difficult.

The coastguard received a call from the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service at 15:00 BST on Saturday requesting assistance.

"Once the lifeboat arrived on the scene, it became clear quickly that they were unable to access the man who appeared to have suffered neck and spinal injuries," he said.

"It was left to the Irish Coastguard helicopter to put a winch down and to airlift the casualty from the location straight to Musgrave Park Hospital where he was transferred to the Royal Victoria Hospital."

Mr Pritchard said the man was not alone when the accident happened.

"We don't know the precise details as yet and we don't know how serious his injuries are, but our understanding is that he fell approximately 25 feet onto rocks and then bounced into the water, so he obviously took quite an impact on the rocks," he said.

"Family members were able to recover him back onto the rocks."