Northern Ireland

Mourne Mountains rescue cadets discharged from hospital

Mourne Mountain rescue operation on Wednesday 2 August Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption The cadet force consisted of 63 children and 10 adults

Eight children taken to hospital after their Army cadet group got into difficulties in the Mourne Mountains have been discharged from hospital.

The cadets are now all back in their summer camp at Ballykinler Army base, near the County Down mountain range.

The 73-strong Cleveland Army Cadets Force were taking part in a training exercise when they got into difficulties in treacherous weather.

Five suffered ankle injuries, while others were treated for exposure.

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Media captionThe children had to be stretchered off the mountains after the weather deteriorated

Children as young as 12 were among those rescued, and 17 had to be stretchered off the mountain during the emergency operation on Wednesday.

On their Facebook page, the Cleveland Army Cadets Force posted this message on Wednesday night: "All cadets now back on camp and bedded down."

Major incident

Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption The Northern Ireland Ambulance said 16 people had hypothermia

The alarm was raised at 11:13 BST and the operation involved the ambulance service, police and Mourne Mountain rescue team.

Newcastle, Bangor and Kilkeel Coastguard Rescue teams, and the UK Coastguard search and rescue helicopters based at Caernarfon and Prestwick, were also on scene.

The Irish Coastguard's 116 helicopter from Dublin also attended.

The Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS) declared a major incident just after 13:00 BST.

Dr Nigel Ruddell, medical director for the NIAS, said conditions on the mountain had been very difficult and that the group leaders had done a good job in protecting the teenagers.

Image copyright Coastguard
Image caption Several of the cadets had slipped on wet rocks
Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption The emergency team set up a base at Annalong Community Hall

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