Lancaster dad dies a week after tragic accident at climbing adventure centre in Keswick

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
A Lancaster dad has died after having to be rescued from an indoor climbing centre during a children's birthday party.

Carl O'Keeffe, 49, passed away in hospital from his injuries at 3pm on Sunday April 30.

Mr O'Keeffe was inside the indoor climbing and activity experience at Kong Adventure Centre in Keswick for the party on Saturday April 22, ITV have reported.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

According to reports, he was with four children when he slipped and became stuck. After staff at the centre were unable to rescue him, emergency services were called just after 3pm.

Carl O'Keeffe passed away in hospital on Sunday.Carl O'Keeffe passed away in hospital on Sunday.
Carl O'Keeffe passed away in hospital on Sunday.

The incident was attended by six crews from Cumbria Fire and Rescue, police, Keswick Mountain Rescue, Cumbria Ore Mines Rescue Unit, Great North Air Ambulance and the Northwest Ambulance Service's Hazardous Area Response Team.

Climbing wall staff, assisted by visiting climbers, dismantled sections of the climbing wall to aid access to tunnels hidden behind the climbing wall panels.

After more than four hours, Mr O'Keeffe was rescued and rushed to the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle where he remained until his death.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mr O'Keeffe's sister Olivia Short posted on Facebook on Sunday: "At 3pm today I sat with Carl and said goodbye forever.

Kong Adventure in Keswick. Photo: Google Street ViewKong Adventure in Keswick. Photo: Google Street View
Kong Adventure in Keswick. Photo: Google Street View

"He was my baby brother and over the last few years became my best friend.

"I loved him dearly and we were in contact daily doing word challenges and exchanging weird facts of nature. I also got to spend alternate weekends with him and his children.

"I have been with him since his accident in Keswick on Saturday 22nd April. he was taken to Carlise hospital intensive care with crush injuries.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"It became apparent that the injuries were severe and he would not be able to survive.

"He was then moved to a private room and I was able to stay with him so that he could die with some dignity.

"I’m broken hearted. As are the rest of our family."

ITV reported that another family member said: "Carl was a devoted parent and he will leave a huge hole in their lives.

"He was a strong advocate for the neurodiverse community. He taught people to learn what adjustments they needed in life and to not only accept them but to live them.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"He was often seen in dark glasses and a fedora hat as he was photophobic. He had a brilliant mind and was in the process of applying to start an astrophysics PHD.

"He was fascinated by solar storms and had been predicting the one that happened this week while he slept. He spent years having the NASA Hubble photos tattooed onto his arm."

A spokesman for Cumberland Council said: “We have been notified of an incident that took place at the Kong Adventure Centre, Keswick, and are investigating the matter, as the regulating body.”

Earlier in the week, a spokesman for Kong Adventure Centre said: "On Saturday 22 April, a member of the public became stuck in the cave system at Kong Adventure.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Staff tried to help the man and followed all emergency procedures but it became apparent that outside assistance was needed.

"Fire crew, mountain rescue, cave rescue, paramedics and Kong staff then worked to extricate the casualty who was taken to Carlisle hospital for further treatment.”

Related topics: