Australia

Australia war veteran angered by rescuer's 'unfit' jibe

Lismore Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter winched Mr Worboys off Mr Warning Image copyright Lismore Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter
Image caption Mr Worboys said he wanted to use the climb to face his demons

An "unfit" Australian hiker who was winched off a mountain is a war veteran who says he suffered a post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) attack.

Aaron Worboys, 38, said he froze during a PTSD episode on the 1,156m (3,792ft) summit of Mount Warning in northern New South Wales state on Monday.

Rescuers climbed up to assess him before calling a helicopter.

Mr Worboys told the BBC he was angered to learn rescuers had criticised his fitness level and weight.

A Tweed District Rescue Squad officer told reporters Mr Worboys was "115kg and probably not the fittest man to be up there".

"We don't mind coming to genuine accidents but frivolous jobs are very disconcerting," the officer said.

The squad had been called to another rescue on the mountain only hours earlier, local media reported.

Mr Worboys, also known by his nickname "Dogga", told the BBC he was first diagnosed with PTSD 10 years ago. He served two tours of Afghanistan, before being medically discharged in 2014.

Image copyright Aaron Worboys
Image caption Mr Worboys, also known as "Dogga", carries the the coffin of a fallen comrade

"Since then it has been a constant struggle both mentally and physically and in those two years I have put on 30kg," he said.

He said he started the Facebook group ;IGY (Pause, I've Got You) to raise awareness and support for those suffering PTSD.

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