The Latest: South Pole rescue flight lands at British post - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

The Latest: South Pole rescue flight lands at British post

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WASHINGTON (AP) -

The Latest on the rescue of two ailing workers from the U.S. research station at the South Pole (all times EDT):


   1:45 p.m.

Federal officials say a small plane with two sick workers has arrived at a British station in Antarctica, the first leg in a daring rescue mission from a remote U.S. station at the South Pole.

National Science Foundation spokesman Peter West confirmed that the Twin Otter turboprop landed Wednesday afternoon at the British station, after a 1,500-mile flight from the South Pole.

The next step is for the two patients to be flown off the continent, probably to South America, for further medical care. That could happen later Wednesday or Thursday, depending on weather conditions and the workers' health. West would not reveal the patients' names or conditions.

Cold and dark usually prevent planes from flying to the polar outpost from February to October.

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Federal officials say a small plane has left the South Pole with a sick worker in a daring rescue mission from the remote U.S. science outpost.

National Science Foundation spokesman Peter West said Wednesday that the Canadian Twin Otter turboprop plane started the 1,500-mile flight to Rothera, a British station on the Antarctic peninsula. From there, the patient will be flown off Antarctica for medical attention that could not be provided on the remote continent.

West said at least one worker had to be evacuated, but it could be two.

Normally planes don't use the polar outpost from February to October because of the dangers of flying in the pitch dark and cold. Wednesday it was minus 75 degrees at the South Pole (minus 60 Celsius).

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