Date: 5 January 2018
Location: Walker, Newcastle
Late last night Northumbria Police requested the assistance of North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team and ourselves. A male in his 40s had been reported missing from home in the Walker area of Newcastle. Given the concern for the man’s wellbeing, the Teams were immediately called out.
As the Police Search Adviser and our Incident Officer were planning the search and members were arriving at Walker Riverside Park, a member of the public reported seeing the man. Very soon after the man was located by Police officers. A very positive and swift outcome for the first incident of the year.
The Teams were stood down at 01.15hrs and everyone was back in bed by 02.30hrs!
Early afternoon yesterday, the North East Ambulance Service requested our support for an injured walker. The walker had sustained a leg injury whilst on the St Cuthbert’s Way downstream of Hethpool Linn in the Northumberland National Park.
The Team and North of Tyne MRT evacuated the walker on a Bell stretcher before being transferred into a Landrover for the remainder of the journey to the crewed Ambulance at the road head.
We wish the walker well and hope he’ll be back in the hills very soon.
A walker in their late 50s reported themselves lost on a circular walk from Ingram. Once Northumbria Police had confirmed the location of the walker’s car, one of our controllers was despatched to liaise with the Police in Ingram.
Unfortunately at this North of Tyne MRT and ourselves had very little to go on – no intended route or no last known point other than Ingram car park! A SARLOC text message was sent to the walker’s mobile and our Incident Officer tried unsuccessfully to contact the walker on his mobile.
Given we were unable to contact the walker, we assumed he must be dropping into a valley… and low and behold after half an hour, a message came through from the Police to say the walker had safely found their own way off the hill.
The incident involved 4 Team members for 45 minutes.
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.
A lone male became unwell whilst walking in the Cheviot Hills this morning. Information received from the Police suggested the walker was in and out of consciousness. At this stage the exact location of the walker was unknown although indications were that he was on Hedgehope Hill.
The Team alongside North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team deployed immediately to rendezvous in the Harthope valley. SARLOC, the location App, was used successfully and the walker’s location was identified as being between Hedgehope and Long Crag. With this information, one of our Landrovers was re-directed to access the casualty’s location from Threestoneburn Wood whilst Team members headed up from the Harthope valley.
Given the seriousness of the situation, air support was also requested by our Incident Controller. A MCA helicopter from Prestwick, Rescue 999, was tasked to the incident and arrived on scene within 50 minutes.
Team members and a North East Ambulance Service Paramedic were transported up to the casualty’s location by the local farmer from Langleeford using his quad and trailer. The farmer’s support was very much appreciated.
Once the casualty had been assessed by the Paramedic from Rescue 999, Team members assisted the crew in carrying the stretcher to the awaiting S92 helicopter. The casualty was then flown to the RVI in Newcastle for further treatment.
The Team would also like to thank the passing walker who came across the casualty and provided immediate care before the emergency services arrived. The walker’s actions certainly helped to save a life.
Earlier this afternoon the Team alongside North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team was activated by Northumbria Police for an experienced female walker who had slipped off the footpath leading into Hareshaw Linn from Bellingham.
The walker had fallen approximately 60 feet and whilst she was initially reported to be uninjured, she was unable to get out of gorge. A local team member, who is also a community Paramedic, was swiftly despatched to assess the situation.
The member was able to identify a safe route out of the gorge and the female was ‘walked out’ to the footpath. On further assessment the walker was complaining of chest pains; as a precaution she was taken to Cramlington hospital. We hope she makes a swift and full recovery.
This is the second incident this year in the Hareshaw Linn valley.
The incident involved 6 members for 1 hour 20 minutes. Another 8 members were on standby in case they were required.
August was a very busy month and now September is off to a flier too!
On Saturday whilst the Team was covering the Cheviots Challenge, we dealt with three separate incidents in the hills to the north and north west of Alwinton.
A female in her early 50s was suffering from severe chest pains, causing her to collapse in one of the most exposed sections of the Pennine Way, west of Windy Gyle. Two Team members were on scene within minutes and further assistance arrived shortly after. One of the Doctors in the Team worked alongside two of our other medics to stabilise the casualty, before handing over to the Great North Air Ambulance Service for a short flight to a crewed Ambulance in the Coquet valley.
Whilst this incident was ongoing, Team members were also dealing with a second female who had sustained an ankle injury and was unable to continue. Both casualties were taken to hospital in the same Ambulance.
The third incident came late in the day when a group of nine walkers became lost and were overtaken by darkness. Once again SARLOC – a location App – proved its worth. A text was sent to one of the walker’s mobile phones which enabled us to pinpoint their location. The walkers had turned 90 degrees off their intended route and ended up in unfamiliar ground 2km from their last known point, Shillmoor. They had walked an extra 5km from Shillmoor and had almost gone in a full circle!
The walkers were evacuated in our Team vehicles to Alwinton where they were checked out by a Doctor and a medic from the Team before being allowed to head home.
All in a long day’s work!
The incidents involved Team 25 members over a period of 8 hours.
The busy August continues with our eleventh incident for the month in the early hours of this morning. Northumbria Police contacted the Team and North of Tyne MRT for assistance in locating a female walker in her early 70s, who had failed to meet up with her husband at 21.00hrs, the previous night.
The female had been walking the Northumberland Coastal Path in sections and had set off from Belford to walk to Fenwick village late afternoon. She had walked the section to Belford earlier in the day.
After trying to locate his wife, the husband raised the alarm in the early hours. As our Incident Controllers were being briefed by the Police officers in Belford, the Police located the female on a drivable track in the woods near to the coastal path.
The walker had fallen sustaining minor injuries but due to the poor conditions overnight, she was also suffering from the cold. She was assessed and treated by a Team medic before being transported to hospital. We hope she makes a full and swift recovery.
The Coastguard helicopter from Prestwick had also been requested to assist in the search, but thankfully was not required on this occasion.
Late on Wednesday evening a request from Northumbria Police was received to assist in a search for an overdue walker in the Haltwhistle area. The male in his mid-20s had left home in Haltwhistle in the afternoon, with the intention of walking over Plenmeller Common towards Eals in the South Tyne valley, before returning along the valley to home. A distance of some 25-30km.
Along with North of Tyne MRT, we placed our members on standby whilst our Incident Controllers tried to ascertain more details on the walker’s exact route.
Thankfully as our Incident Controllers were being briefed by the Police, the walker returned home safely, albeit a bit later than planned!
The incident involved three Team members and another 14 were on standby for 2 hours 10 minutes.