Date: 14 August 2017
Location: Kielder Dam
Two campers were reported missing by the Forestry Commission late yesterday afternoon. Initially a group of three, the campers had got their car stuck off a track near Chirdon Head where they had been camping. One remained with the car whilst the two others went for help. The weather at Kielder was poor and as such there was a level of concern for their wellbeing.
Northumbria Police requested support from North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team and ourselves. As two of our incident controllers were liaising with Northumbria Police officers and the Forestry Commission at Kielder and our Incident Officer was working with the Force Operations Manager on a search plan, news came in that the two campers had been located in the Blackcock Inn at Falstone. They were waiting on a tow truck!?!
Date: 6 August 2017
Location: Bamburgh Castle
Northumbria Police requested our support, alongside North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team, to assist in organising and coordinating a search for a missing 7 year old child around the beach area of Bamburgh Castle. The Coastguard and RNLI had also been requested along with the NPAS helicopter.
The Teams were placed on standby while more information was gained and a search strategy developed.
Shortly after being placed on standby, the NPAS helicopter located the child on the beach who was then picked up by a Police officer.
The North East Ambualance Service requested our assistance, along with North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team, to help extract a female casualty from a difficult to access location along the Hadrians Wall path. The casualty had fallen, sustaining limb and head injuries. She was treated by NEAS before being carried by Mountain Rescue stretcher to a waiting ambulance.
Date: 27 July 2017
Location: The Cheviot
The busy period continues with another incident yesterday afternoon. A walker fell on the flag stones near the summit of The Cheviot and sustained a head injury. His companion provided immediate first aid and requested the assistance of Mountain Rescue.
Northumbria Police contacted North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team and ourselves, and our Duty Controller swiftly called out the Teams. Contact was also made with the casualty’s companion to assess the severity of the injuries.
As our Team Land Rover and members were en-route to the Harthope Valley, a local member headed up the hill to assess the situation. He was then followed by other Team members carrying a stretcher, casualty bag, group shelter, oxygen and other medical kit. Thankfully after the initial assessment it was felt that the casualty could walk off the hill with support. It would have been a very long stretcher carry off otherwise.
After medical attention and being warmed, a 3km supported walk down the hill and a short Landrover ride later, saw us hand over the casualty to the North East Ambulance Service.
We wish the walker a swift recovery not least because the accident happened on their first walk of a holiday to Northumberland. Not the way either of the walkers had hoped their day would end.
Date: 24 July 2017
Location: Chattlehope, near Catcleugh Reservoir
Just as many of you are waking up, some of our members are just off to bed! Or more to the point off to work after no sleep!
A Duke of Edinburgh Gold mountain bike expedition group from the Midlands was reported overdue by their supervisor. Northumbria Police swiftly alerted North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team and ourselves. Initial information on the group was limited and our Duty Controller was unable to contact the supervisor due to the poor mobile service in the area he was in.
After an hour further information on the group’s potential location became available as contact had been made with two of the group who were walking off the hill towards Chattlehope by the shores of Catcleugh Reservoir. The other two group members were in their tent which was believed to be on Girdle Fell. The farmer from Chattlehope House assisted with the retrieval of the two group members who were walking off the hill to raise the alarm. Unfortunately he and one of the supervisors were unable to initially locate them.
At this point we called both Teams out and by this stage one of our controllers and a 4×4 vehicle were already en-route. Soon after the arrival of our controller at the farm, news came in that the two group members had been located and were being transported back to Chattlehope in the farmer’s 4×4.
Our attention then turned to the two members still up on Girdle Fell. Given the misty conditions, the remoteness of their location and the fact that there wasn’t any mobile communication with the two remaining group members, it was agreed with Northumbria Police that we would locate them and walk them off the hill.
Four Team members along with Search Dog Ben and the farmer from Chattlehope House ventured up Girdle Fell. Ground conditions were extremely difficult and visibility was low due to the prevailing mist. The group’s tents and the two group members were located at 03.46hrs. Both were in good spirits and we duly walked them off the hill; all back at the vehicles an hour later.
The group was well equipped and had made the right decision to hold their position and send for help after the conditions experienced on their route were more challenging than expected, causing them to be very late. A good outcome for all concerned and a long night for some!
Many thanks to the farmer and his wife at Chattlehope for their hospitality and assisting with the rescue.
The incident involved 5 Team members for 7 hours 30 minutes. A further 12 Team members were en-route before being stood down.
Date: 23 July 2017
Location: Yearning Saddle Refuge
A female walker sustained an upper leg injury late yesterday afternoon and was unable to weight bare. The female, her partner and their two dogs took refuge in the shelter at Yearning Saddle just below Lamb Hill and called the Police and requested Mountain Rescue’s assistance. By this stage the weather conditions on the hill had deteriorated with heavy rain and low visibility.
North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team and ourselves responded immediately, with local members heading straight up the Upper Coquet Valley to Blindburn to liaise with Northumbria Police officers. Two Rescue Team vehicles were also deployed. Borders Search & Rescue Unit were alerted in case additional assistance was required.
Once again the shepherd from Blindburn assisted us by skilfully driving up onto the Border Ridge in his 4×4. Conditions were worse than two weeks ago when he last made the same trip but nevertheless we made it!
Our Team Leader and a Paramedic from the North East Ambulance Service were soon at the refuge shelter where the female was assessed and given pain relief before being assisted into the 4×4. Half an hour later we were safely back down at Blindburn and the female casualty was handed over to a NEAS crewed ambulance.
Thanks again to the shepherd from Blindburn who made our job a lot easier yesterday evening. A long carryover beckoned…!
Date: 19 July 2017
Location: Newcastle and Durham
Northumbria Police requested our support with a missing person who lived in the Newcastle area and had been last seen in North Shields. SARLOC was used again to try to identify the missing person’s location. No response to SMS was received and no further action was taken by the Team or North of Tyne MRT.
During the above incident, our Duty Controller also received a request from the North East Ambulance Service to assist in locating a casualty on an embankment in the Durham area. Not strictly our area but to provide a timely response a SARLOC SMS was sent by our Duty Controller. The casualty was eventually located by NEAS.
Earlier in the evening our Duty Controller had also been alerted to an incident on the Scottish side of the Cheviots by Border Search & Rescue Unit. At this stage it was for situational awareness and BSARU along with the Scottish Ambulance Service were able to deal with the injured farmer.
A busy evening but thankfully we didn’t need to leave our homes!
Date: 16 July 2017
Time: 12.53 hrs
Location: East coast, near South Shields
The Duty Controller for North of Tyne MRT and ourselves responded to a request from Northumbria Police again to use SARLOC in helping to locate a missing person. The person was believed to be on the coast in the South Shields area.
The missing person was found two hours after the initial request in a cave on the coast near South Shields.
The incident lasted 1 hour 55 minutes and involved one Team member.
Date: 13 July 2017
Time: 21.36 hrs
Location: Northern part of operational area
Northumbria Police requested support from North of Tyne MRT and ourselves in locating a high risk missing female. At there was little information on her possible location.
Our Duty Controller used both SARLOC and MX SARMAN’s location tool to try to assist with locating the missing female. Unfortunately both tools require the missing person to click on a weblink embedded in the text message that we send to their phone. On this occasion the missing female did not click on the link.
Thankfully an hour later the female was located safe and well in Berwick.
The incident lasted 1 hour 4 minutes and involved one Team member.