Cross Fell glider crash: Pilot, 15, seriously injured

image source, Great North Air Ambulance
image captionInvestigators are expected to be at the crash site for the next few days

A 15-year-old glider pilot has been taken to hospital with serious injuries after crashing on the highest mountain in the Pennines.

The boy took off from Edensoaring gliding club, near Skirwith, and crashed on Cross Fell at about 14:00 BST on Wednesday.

The teenager was taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle by the Great North Air Ambulance.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch sent a team to the scene near Kirkland.

"We located the wreckage and could see it was strewn across the top of the hill," said Jay Steward, who piloted the air ambulance helicopter from Teesside International Airport.

"It was quite a mess. We put the aircraft downwind of where he was because we didn't want to blow any of the debris into him because we knew he was quite badly hurt."

Edensoaring is a gliding club that is known to pilots for its views of the Eden Valley and the Lake District.

Its website says aircraft from the site often reach heights of more than 20,000ft (6,100m). Cross Fell is 893m (2,929ft) high.

The minimum age for a trained glider to fly solo is 14, according to the British Gliding Association.

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