Two recent falls highlight the dangers of cliff walks.jpg

Two recent falls highlight the dangers of cliff walks

By CATHY MORRIS [email protected]

Two British tourists have needed medical attention in the last two weeks after sustaining injuries by falling on rocks at Algarve beaches.

Both cases involved people out casually walking with family.

On the Carnival public holiday, a woman sustained a fractured leg after falling from a cliff at Praia do Vau near to Portimão. The 57-year old, who was not named by authorities, was taken to the Barlavento Hospital in Portimão where she was treated at the orthopaedic unit.

Then on Sunday, a 73-year old man fell on rocks at Praia de Inatel in Albufeira where he had been walking over a difficult and rocky area.

Commandant Marques Pereira, Captain of the Port of Portimão, told the Algarve Resident: “An alert was raised just before midday. The Maritime Police were at the scene within 10 minutes and found the man recovering in a nearby cafe.

“He had fallen on a difficult patch of rock and had a head injury. He was then taken by local emergency services to Faro hospital.”

In a statement sent to the Algarve Resident, Faro hospital confirmed that the man had received treatment on Sunday, March 1 and left of his own accord the same day.

Commandant Marques Pereira advises all visitors to the beaches in the region to exercise caution and to be responsible for their own safety while exploring the coastline.

“There is an associated risk and as so everyone should exercise care and attention and always use appropriate footwear,” he said.

Stunning coastline

Maritime accidents on rocks or cliffs have prompted calls for the more obvious placement of warning notices at beaches across the region to display information on the viability of walking in areas which might be dangerous.

Marques Pereira explained that this responsibility would lie with the Administração da Região Hidrográfica do Algarve, and again urged the public to be responsible, to know their personal limits and to respect the risks associated with cliff walking and rock climbing.

The stunning coastline draws many tourists to visit the Algarve and coastal walks have grown in popularity, with several groups now actively walking across the region.

Julie Statham has lived in the Algarve for 11 years and leads one such walking group. Her walks have often included cliff sections and she agreed that more informative signs would be helpful to tourists who may not foresee a hazard before setting out.

“It is very important to stick to established walking paths and these will be outlined in an appropriate walking guide. I would recommend my book Walking in the Algarve, which is available on Amazon.”

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