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Callouts 2013

Tuesday, 03 September 2013 14:16

Difficult rescue in the Upper Dart Valley

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Difficult rescue in the Upper Dart Valley

At 18:00 this evening we were called to assist the Westcountry Ambulance Service with the rescue of a young female casualty who had sustained a knee injury in the Upper Dart Gorge between Dartmeet and Newbridge in Dartmoor National Park.

Access into the gorge is difficult as it is steep sided and thick with gorse and ferns. Progress can be made along the river from both Newbridge and Dartmeet, although it is slow and difficult as slippery and narrow in places, and ill advised when the river level is high.

The grid reference location of the casualty was confirmed by the Seaking, Rescue 169 from RAF Chivenor as being adjacent the River Dart on the valley bottom, but as the casualty’s condition was not life threatening and the winch operation would have been tricky, a decision was made for our volunteers to evacuate the casualty by stretcher up the side of the gorge to a waiting land ambulance.

Rope rescue evacuation

Fortunately we train regularly in the valley and have identified evacuation points should the need arise. Our team of volunteers assessed the casualty’s injuries, made her comfortable and transferred her to our stretcher. A rope system was rigged to lift the stretcher from the incident location and continue safely up the East side of the valley to Dr Blackall’s Drive where our Landrover Ambulance, DART52, transferred the casualty to the road head above Newbridge, and into the care of the Westcountry Ambulance Service

We would like to thank all our volunteers who attended the incident for the professional and efficient job they did in a very challenging location. We also wish the young female casualty a very speedy recovery.

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