13 Oct 2011

Antarctic worker to be flown to NZ for treatment

5:15 pm on 13 October 2011

An American woman who became ill while working in Antarctica is being evacuated to Christchurch for medical treatment.

The woman is understood to have suffered a stroke some time ago and has wanted to leave Antarctica for weeks.

The United States-led National Science Foundation, which runs the American Programme at the South Pole, says an emergency evacuation during the winter season is very risky so it decided to wait until the weather improved before flying the woman out.

A spokesperson for the foundation says the flight was due to leave on Thursday, but weather conditions are not great, so it may be postponed until Friday.