Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Everest rescuer to return to summit for second attempt

Leslie Binns at camp one on Mount Everest Image copyright Leslie Binns
Image caption Leslie Binns abandoned his Everest ascent when he took Sunita Hazra down the mountain for treatment

A British ex-serviceman who abandoned his Mount Everest ascent to save a fellow mountaineer will return to the peak for a second attempt to scale it.

Leslie Binns was about 500m from the summit in May when he saved Sunita Hazra, an Indian woman who was slipping down the mountain.

The 42-year-old, from Rotherham, South Yorkshire, helped her down to a camp where her frostbite was treated.

Mr Binns said he would return to Nepal in April to raise money for charity.

The mountaineer, who was in the Army for 13 years, lost vision in his left eye after he was hit by an improvised explosive device in 2009.

Talking to BBC Radio Sheffield, Mr Binns said he encountered Mrs Hazra on his final summit push.

Image caption Mrs Hazra had lost her gloves and had frostbite

"She came flying down the mountain - I basically rugby tackled her to stop her going any further down, maybe to her death," he said.

"She was out of oxygen, her gloves were off, she had frostbite; that's when I decided to cancel my summit bid and take her down to the relative safety of camp four."

After using a hot flask of tea to increase her body temperature, she eventually received hospital treatment and made "just about a full recovery", Mr Binns said.

He will fly out on 5 April for a second ascent, while raising money for a charity which helped him to retrain after he was medically discharged from the Army.

Image copyright Leslie Binns
Image caption Mr Binns served in Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan during his time in the Army

He described it as another go at "the hardest thing I've ever done in my entire life".

"It's a lifelong dream to get to the summit of this mountain - you spend a lot of money and the mental and physical effort is unbelievable," he said.

"Of course I was gutted, but on the other hand I've managed to save a woman's life and get her back to her family, so that more than makes up for it."

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