Incident 65/2008

This evening at 17:10 we received a pager call from NWAS (Manchester Area) regarding the report of a youth who had fallen into a moorland stream on the edge of Smithills Moor, in the vicinity Gilligant’s Farm, Coal Pit Road, Smithills.

The initial information was that the youth was at the bottom of a steep slope of a moorland stream and our specialist steep-ground evacuation knowledge and equipment would be required.

Living local to the scene, our Deputy Team Leader, Geoff Seddon, was the third person on the scene at 17:25, immediately after the responding NWAS Rapid Response Vehicle and Emergency Ambulance.

Upon arriving at a bridge over the moorland stream on Coal Pit Road, the ambulance crew and our Deputy Team Leader found out that members of the youth’s party had carried the very seriously injured youth to the roadside, where emergency treatment was immediately administered.

At 17:33 the North West Air Ambulance, Helimed 08, landed on scene at a landing zone chosen by our Deputy Leader. A rapid helicopter evacuation of the very seriously injured 13 year old male youth took place, with him being airlifted direct to Royal Blackburn Hospital.

We have since learnt that the youth involved has been transferred to the Royal Pendlebury Children’s Hospital and all team members wish the youth well.

The youth had apparently fallen at least 20 feet from a rope swing on the side of the moorland valley into the dry bed of the moorland stream.

Our Deputy Leader and team member Mark Scott were requested shortly after this incident by Greater Manchester Police to dismantle this rope swing due to the dangerous terrain that it was situated in, to lessen the possibility of a further accident in this area.

In total, 22 Bolton team members responded to this incident including two of our Landrover ambulances. Virtually all members were stood down responding. NWAS (Manchester Area) sent a rapid response vehicle and an emergency ambulance, with the North West Air Ambulance Helimed 08, and Greater Manchester Police officers also called to this incident.