FREAK ROCK FALL SCARE
By LEONIE BRANN
CLIMBING Mount Warning could have ended tragically yesterday for an eight-year-old Pottsville girl, who was hit by a runaway boulder when scrambling down from the summit.
Tas Devine, has grazing to the back of her left thigh and has a badly bruised foot and ankle, after a "freak" accident when climbing down from the summit of Mount Warning.
A 23-year-old female tourist from Maroubra in Sydney, suffered injuries to her right foot and ankle, after another climber accidentally dislodged a boulder that was about 50cm in diameter, from the mountain's summit.
The heavy rock sped down the cliff face, that was busy with bushwalkers scrambling up the chain to the mountain's peak, and landed near young Tas Devine, before it split in two and ricocheted, injuring Tas as well as the other female bushwalker, who was climbing to the summit.
Melissa Devine, mother of Tas and her sister Ameerah, said the family had been climbing Mount Warning for the first time when the boulder came "hurtling down" when they were about seven metres from the top of the inactive volcano.
"We are so lucky that nothing else happened," she said.
"Tas could have got knocked off the mountain. "This was the first time we had climbed Mount Warning and Tas didn't even want to do it."
Mrs Devine had to coax her daughter, who was in pain and shock, to climb down another 40 metres to the walking track below.
"She (Tas) was really shaken up by it," Mrs Devine said.
A woman who Mrs Devine said must have dislodged the boulder at the summit, apologised to her and her injured daughter as they were slowly descending the mountain.
"There was a lot of loose rocks up there, and it was slippery," she said.
The RACQ Careflight helicopter flew out to rescue the injured woman, who was treated by a doctor and paramedic at the scene, before being flown to the rescue service's base at Tugun at around 3.10pm yesterday.
She was then transported by ambulance to Gold Coast Hospital.
Tweed Police, speciality casualty paramedics from the NSW Ambulance Service and volunteers from the Tweed Rescue Service and Tweed area State Emergency Service also responded to the rescue.