Man thanks his rescuers after 40ft Torquay cliff fall
A MAN who was airlifted by helicopter from a dangerous rocky ledge after a fall has thanked his rescuers.
Michael Turnstill, 20, was trying to climb up the rocks to reach friends at Petitor in Torquay when he slipped and fell 40ft.
Groggy and covered in cuts and bruises he managed to signal his friends for help who in turn called 999 and alerted the coastguard.
When they reached him it was decided to call the helicopter as it would be difficult to manually lift him and walk him away by stretcher.
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The expertly piloted coastguard helicopter from Portland then managed to land at the rocks known as Giant's Armchair and take him to hospital.
Michael, who was detained in hospital overnight to be treated for bruised kidneys, cuts and a sprained ankle, says he did not have time to thank his rescuers at the time.
He says: "Now I'm back home and have time to think about what happened I can't thank them enough.
"It started when I was on the beach at Petitor and saw my mates on the other side of the cliffs fishing.
"I wanted to get there to join them so I started climbing up a footpath but that disappeared so I carried on up around the rocks.
"As I was trying to get there I fell down. I somehow managed to get straight back up and shouted to my friends.
"But it is all a bit hazy because I think I may have bumped my head."
His friends, noticing the bleeding Michael shouting for help, called 999.
"There was no way I was getting back to the beach when the coastguards and paramedics reached me so they called the helicopter," he said. "I'm amazed he managed to land it where he did to be honest but I'm thankful he did."
The incident happened on Wednesday, September 5.
Coastguards confirmed lifeboats from Torquay and Teignmouth were both called to the scene to locate Michael.