In the first snowstorm of the winter season the Woodhead Mountain Rescue Team were called to look for a lost walker in the moors near Langsett yesterday eveing.
The walker was able to raise the alarm with a mobile phone and was carefully quizzed by team members expert in local knowledge of the moorland to identify the most likely area the walker would be found. A hasty search party was quickly dispatched to locate the walker in very cold and snowy conditions with limited visibility.
On finding the walker who was very cold and likely to be suffering from hypothermia the team provided shelter, a warm drink and food before looking to evacuate from the moorland.
The lost walker was unable to walk anymore and so was wrapped in a casualty blanket and secured onto a stretcher to carry off the moorland. A rescue helicopter had arrived in the location but was unable to land due to the difficult weather conditions meaning that the stretcher carry was left to the 18 volunteer team members who were now on the moorland.
The stretcher carry was made treacherously slippy by the fast falling snow and took a real team effort to carry the stretcher for 1hour 30mins to get the lost walker to the road head where the ambulance was waiting.
“This was a real case of life or death in those conditions. If the alarm had not been raised the situation could have easily been a lot worse” John Halstead, WMRT incident controller.
Thanks to South Yorkshire Police for their support and providing warm drinks to the team members once back at the road.
This is the teams 34th call out of the year so far and involved 25 team members. It lasted 6 hours from the alarm being raised to the lost walker reaching the ambulance.
WMRT is a volunteer organisation and relies on team fundraising and donations by the public to fund annual running costs. WMRT provides a search and rescue service to local communities and has been involved with flooding, searching for missing or lost people and providing support to the Yorkshire Ambulance with evacuation of casualties from rural environments.