It what has been described as a “lucky escape”, a 74-year-old man who “tumbled” 15 metres down a steep incline at a popular Berry walking trail and lookout has suffered only minor injuries.
The man, who was walking with his wife at the time of the accident, can thank a tree which stopped his fall, for possibly not suffering more serious injuries.
The man, who was about halfway up the walking trail at Drawing Room Rocks, at Woodhill, north west of Berry about 6.40am on Tuesday (November 14), when he stumbled and fell over the edge of the track, and tumbled 10-15 metres down the steep incline.
The man, who is believed to be a Shoalhaven local, only came to rest against a tree, which stopped him falling a further.
The South Coast Register understands if the man had fallen a metre or so in another direction he could have plunged around four metres off a sheer drop.
The man’s wife raised the alarm with emergency services rushing to the scene.
Faced with a tricky rescue operation, NSW Ambulance paramedics, tethered with safety ropes, made their way down the steep incline to stabilise the man, who was conscious and talking with his rescuers.
NSW Police and Rural Fire Service Crews from Shoalhaven Heads, and Broughton Vale worked with paramedics to recover the man from his precarious position.
The rescue operation took around three hours before the man could be recovered from his location.
He was placed in a stokes litter and hauled back up to the track, from where he was further assessed and then carried to the car park at the bottom of the trail.
The NSW Ambulance Toll Rescue Helicopter also attended the scene with a doctor and paramedic form the Wollongong based helicopter accompanying the man by ambulance to Wollongong Hospital.
He was reported to be in a stable condition, but suffering numerous abrasions, with paramedics saying it was incredible he didn't appear to have suffered any broken bones during his fall.
8.40am: Rescue underway to recover injured man from Drawing Room Rocks
A rescue is currently underway at the Drawing Room Rocks, at Woodhill, north west of Berry.
Emergency services are on the scene at the popular walking trail and lookout to rescue a man believed to be in his 70s, who fell about five metres down an embankment.
NSW Ambulance was alerted to the emergency around 6.40am, with initial reports the man had fallen off a cliff.
It has since been confirmed the man fell about five metres down an embankment, suffering minor injuries.
A NSW Ambulance spokesperson said the man had suffered minor injuries, including a number of abrasions to his body.
Numerous ambulance units including the Shoalhaven rescue truck, NSW Police and Fire and Rescue NSW crews are on the scene, as is the NSW Ambulance Toll Rescue Helicopter.
The man is reported to be conscious, with the difficulty being recovering from his location.
The South Coast Register understands man is located in a hard to get to location, with ambulance saying the recovering the man from his location was proving “difficult”.
There is no word on where the man will be transported to at this stage.
Considered nature’s drawing room, Drawing Room Rocks are located in the Barren Grounds Nature Reserve about 10 minute drive from Berry and then a 45 minute walk to the summit.
The walk ascends from 250m to 600m above sea level along a track through forest and heathland then onto a plateau, where weathered rocks make up nature’s Drawing Room, with tables and chairs made of rock.
The unique shapes are the result of the weathering of the Hawkesbury Sandstone, over a long period by a number of different agents: wind, rain, cold, heat and chemicals in rainfall.
The sandstone of the Drawing Room Rocks is horizontal strata, so the flat table tops consist of stone made up of a harder more resistant mineral layer which has remained when the softer surrounding rocks have eroded.