At 3.15am Portland Coastguard were alerted by Falmouth Coastguard who had received a satellite emergency call from the GSF Rig 140, on tow 20 miles offshore from Portland. A crew member onboard the rig had fallen 20 feet and sustained serious head injuries and urgently needed hospital treatment. Sea conditions were rough with strong winds of Force 10 at the deck level.
Portland Coastguard scrambled the Coastguard Rescue Helicopter India Juliet from Lee on Solent and in very difficult conditions the crew were able to land the helicopter onto the rig's landing platform 112 feet above sea level in pitching seas and high winds. The derrick on the rig would make winching a casualty too dangerous so a landing was required.
The casualty was then airlifted to Southampton where he was met by Southampton Coastguards and Hampshire ambulance for transfer to the specialist neurological unit at Southampton Hospital.
The injured crew member from the rig is a 22 year old man. The rig was on tow to Las Palmas.
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