Cliff rescue survivor, wife describe long road to recovery after Cape Woolamai fall
One of the two men who survived after he and a co-worker fell 30 metres off a cliff into choppy water has spoken about his lucky escape and his recovery for the first time.
The dramatic and delicate rescue of Peter Xuereb and his colleague at Cape Woolamai has been described by one of the rescuers as the most technical and involved he’d ever seen.
Almost 100 rescuers worked for more than three hours to free the men from a crevice as waves pounded the injured pair.
They had both received serious injuries.
Peter spoke to Neil Mitchell at The Alfred hospital for the Father’s Day appeal and said he has little to no memory of the day.
‘The three people that were with us, my boss, his brother and the apprentice, the three of them did a fantastic job keeping the two of us up out of the water,’ he said.
‘They kept us as safe as possible.’
Peter and his co-worker, who were undertaking erosion works, fell after a cable broke.
He was in The Alfred hospital for four weeks and said it was a surreal sight to watch the dramatic footage.
As for his wife ‘superwoman’ wife Melanie, the day of the rescue on July 20 will be a day she will never forget.
‘I’m still in disbelief, I don’t know how both men are still alive,’ she said.
MICA flight paramedic Darren Hodge called in to talk to Peter and his wife.
He said he’d like to get in touch with Peter’s co-workers for their ‘Herculean’ effort, and the fisherman who helped get the pair out.
He would like to nominate them for a bravery award.
‘I’m very pleased that Peter and his colleague don’t remember because it was very brutal, the incident.’
LISTEN: Neil Mitchell speaks with Peter, his wife and one of the rescuers