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Causes of Injuries in the Mountains: A Review of Worldwide Reports into Accidents in Mountaineering
  1. Major J W Knott, RAMC, Regimental Medical Officer1
  1. 1The 1st Battalion The MERCIAN Regiment, Garrison Medical Centre, Catterick Garrison, North Yorkshire, DL9 4DF 01748 873183 DoctorKnott{at}


This review presents a selection of sources from the UK and around the world that have reported on both incidents and accidents in the mountains. Common themes are extracted to illustrate the circumstances under which accidents, injuries and fatalities occur and the underlying factors that have contributed to incidents in the first place. There is an attempt to dispel some ‘myths’ surrounding accidents in mountain based activities. The purpose of highlighting these issues is to allow those undertaking them to understand where the greatest risks lie. This enables the individual, team leaders, rescue services and those involved in the overall management of wilderness areas to plan accordingly, with the aim of reducing injuries and deaths.

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