A child cheated death this evening after she was struck by a falling tree while cycling with her family in Cork city.
The girl, nine, was pinned under the tree for up to 40 minutes as emergency services worked to free her.
She is being treated in Cork University Hospital tonight for lacerations to her head and for suspected fractures to her lower limbs. She is expected to make a full recovery.
The incident occurred as the girl, her mother and brother were cycling on a biking and walkway which links the Atlantic Pond to the Marina around 5pm.
What was described as a “substantial tree” fell as the family passed and the girl was struck by one of its large limbs.
Her bike was crushed and she was pinned beneath.
Emergency services were alerted and three units of Cork City Fire Brigade and two ambulances were tasked to the scene.
Third officer with Cork City Fire Brigade, Martin Coughlan, said two firefighting crews used handsaws to cut the tree’s branches and limbs from around the little girl as medics worked on her.
She was conscious throughout her ordeal and was subsequently removed by ambulance to CUH.
Mr Coughlan praised her for her bravery during the entire rescue operation.
“She is a very brave little girl. She was a fabulous patient,” he said.
Busy day for all crews with multiple incidents around the city and county including fallen trees, flooding and RTCs.
Crews just finished at a serious incident at the Marina, one patient transferred to hospital by @NASCorkDecember 15, 2018
“She listened to instructions, she was very cooperative, and she was able to tell us where her pain was which made it easier for us to make better assessments.”
Mr Coughlan said fire crews have responded to several weather-related calls throughout the day, including several downed trees and fallen power lines.
But he said they have also had to rescue several stranded motorists from their cars after they got trapped in flood waters.
“If a road is flooded, don’t drive through the flood waters.
“You’re putting yourself at risk and you’re also putting at risk be emergency service that have to respond.”