British tourists safe after Costa Rica mountain ordeal

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Sixteen British tourists who were trapped overnight in a mountain pass in Costa Rica were evacuated Thursday, officials said.

Rescue personnel used a police helicopter to reach the mountainous area of Santa Maria de Dota, southwest of San Jose, and were able to evacuate eight tourists, including a girl who had broken one of her legs, the Ministry of Public Security said.

"The other eight, who were in the Bethany Shelter (in the same area) were able to come down from the mountain on foot," the ministry said.

The tourists were taken to the coastal town of Quepos, 150 kilometers (90 miles) west of San Jose, for medical test.

The group was climbing in the mountains around Santa Maria de Dota on a day trip when a girl in the group apparently broke her leg, delaying their ability to get out.

Heavy rains kept Red Cross workers from bringing out the Britons, the agency said.

© 2010 AFP

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