Date: 21 May 2017
Location: Great Wanney Crag, near Kirkwhelpington
Just as many Team members were about to have their Sunday dinner, we received a callout for an injured female climber on Great Wanney Crag. The climber had fallen onto a ledge and sustained a suspected fractured ankle.
Northumbria Police requested our assistance at just before 6.00pm and along with North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team we responded immediately.
Working with the North East Ambulance Service and their HART team, the casualty was treated and her ankle immobilised before we lowered her to the foot of the crag. An awkward stretcher lower over rough, bouldery ground then followed before a 500 metre stretcher carry to the waiting Ambulance. The evacuation took just over 2 hours from arrival on scene.
A male walker in his late 60s was reported lost in thick mist in The Cheviot Hills yesterday evening. Northumbria Police swiftly requested our and North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team’s assistance.
Having received details from the Police, our Incident Officer sent a SARLOC message to the walker’s phone. Unfortunately this failed. Thankfully the Incident Officer was able to speak to the walker on his mobile and from the information provided was able to identify a likely location.
The walker who was well equipped was asked to remain at his location whilst the Teams’ 4x4s were deployed to search the prioritised routes. The rest of the Team members were place on standby.
Shortly before 20.00hrs the walker was located to the north of Cold Law above the Harthope valley. He was tired and a bit cold but otherwise okay. He was transported to Wooler, his intended finishing point having started from Kirk Yetholm earlier in the day.
He had walked along the Pennine Way to The Cheviot, descended to Scald Hill and the over to Broadhope Hill before becoming disoriented in the thick mist. A big day out even without the ordeal at the end.
A good result!
The incident involved 11 Team members for 2 hours 20 minutes.
Last weekend the Team was involved in a research project led by The Centre for Search Research and Newcastle University Business School. The research was designed to explore the effectiveness of searching on the ground and in the air.
Over two days our search groups and search dog, Tess, and her handler were put to the test on the ground searching routes and areas on the moors near Rothbury.
QuestUAV and Northumberland National Park Authority were involved in testing fixed wing and rotor drones to search a defined route and area, and the UK Civil Air Patrol used planes and a helicopter to search the same areas.
From an incident control perspective the research gave us a great opportunity to put some of our technology to the test in tracking search groups and accurately recording what had and hadn’t been searched. We also worked with QuestUAV to analyse the digital imagery produced from the fixed wing drone to locate the missing persons.
A highly beneficial couple of days with observers from Northumbria Police, the National Police Air Support Unit, Northumberland Fire & Rescue and the Coastguard.
After a quiet few weeks, Northumbria Police requested Mountain Rescue’s assistance in a search for a 11 year old boy who had gone missing from the Kingswood educational centre near to Hexham. North of Tyne MRT and ourselves responded with our overhead team liaising with the Police to prepare a search strategy and plan, whilst members travelled to the RV.
As the first search areas near to the grounds of the centre were being completed, news came in that the missing boy had been found in the centre of Hexham. Team Leader, Iain Nixon, commented “We are pleased that Callum Davidson was found safe and well, and the MRTs would like to thank the members of public who offered their assistance in the search for Callum.”
Our highly trained searchers and three air scenting search dogs worked alongside Northumbria Police officers, the National Police Air Support Unit and Northumberland Fire & Rescue Service. The Fire Service had provided access to their thermal imaging cameras. A great multi agency response leading to a successful outcome.
Date: 9 April 2017
The Team along with North of Tyne MRT were called last night as part of a multi-agency response to search for a missing 66 year old woman from Gateshead.
The missing woman’s car had been found in the Newburn area and the Team were asked to search woodland, parkland, tracks and the river bank in the area. Nothing was found and Police are continuing investigations.
Around midday yesterday a climber fell 3 metres whilst bouldering on the crags in Hepburn Woods. The climber sustained a lower leg injury. Due to the likely location of the casualty, the North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) requested the assistance of the Team and North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team.
The Teams responded immediately deploying a vehicle with specialist rescue kit for a steep slope evacuation and members within easy reach of the incident site.
The NEAS Community Paramedic and crewed Ambulance handled the casualty care, whilst the Mountain Rescues Teams determined the best evacuation routes. A challenging stretcher carry then ensured to the road where the climber was transferred into the ambulance.
Date: 12 March 2017
Location: Cragside Estate, near Rothbury
The spring weather yesterday brought lots of people out into Northumberland. For one lady her day didn’t end so well, when she slipped and sustained a serious upper leg injury whilst walking in the Cragside estate.
The North East Ambulance Service requested the assistance of Mountain Rescue to evacuate the lady from a hard to reach location near to Nelly Moss Lakes. The lady received treatment from the Community Paramedic before members of the Team and some from North of Tyne MRT carried the lady on a Bell stretcher 500 metres along a slippery path to the awaiting Ambulance.
Date: 7 March 2017
Location: Harthope Valley, near Wooler
Mid-afternoon yesterday the Team and North of Tyne MRT were requested by Northumbria Police to assist with the rescue of a female walker. The female had fallen and sustained a lower arm injury. The exact location was unknown but was believed to be on the footpath between Langleeford Farm and Scotsman Knowe.
The female’s husband raised the alarm having walked downstream to the nearest inhabited farmhouse at Langleeford.
Two Landrover ambulances were swiftly despatched whilst our Incident Officer travelled directly to the scene. Thankfully enroute the Teams were notified that a North East Ambulance Service Paramedic from Wooler had been able to access the female’s location just upstream of Langleeford Hope. The Paramedic was able to walk the casualty back to their vehicle and the Teams were stood down.
Date: 2 March 2017
Location: Border Ridge
At 18.30hrs yesterday Police Scotland requested the assistance of Border Search & Rescue Unit to locate two Danish walkers on the Border Ridge. The walkers were believed to be between Auchope Cairn and Windy Gyle.
The teams south of the border – North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team and ourselves – were alerted by BSARU. One of our controller group sent a SARLOC message to the walkers. Thankfully this time it worked – the poor mobile reception in the area affects whether the system works.
Armed with the exact location it was agreed to despatch a group from the north side of the border to locate and evacuate the walkers. The walkers were swiftly located and walked off the hill to a waiting ATV. They were cold, but otherwise no worse for their ordeal.
As you’ll see from the SARLOC fix below the walkers weren’t too far away from the location of the 10 walkers involved in Incident No.8.