Cave Rescue, July 22, 1992
Carol's Crack Cave, WV


REPORT

At about 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 22, a group of six cavers entered Carol's Crack in Hardy County, West Virginia. All were wearing wetsuits. They reached the end by 6 p.m. and then decided they needed to hurry out. About three-quarters of the way out, one must step across a gap of four feet above a pit. Paul Gillis (35), the trip leader, had made this move on 12 previous trips. Yet, when he made the move, he hit his head on an overhanging rock on the far side. He rebounded from this and fell down the pit, sliding down the near-vertical wall feet first, face in to the wall. He fell 12 feet, landing on his feet, suffering only bruises to his shins. He was able to climb up, and they continued out without further incident.


References

NSS News, December 1993 (Part 2) V51N12, Page 363.

Paul Gillis NSS Accident Report August 16, 1992, 3 pages.


Analysis

Gillis had never noticed the overhanging rock before. Perhaps it wasn't there before but the cave didn't like being taken for granted.