Incident 22/2011

This afternoon at 15:20 we were contacted by pager by the ’Airdesk’ (NWAA Helimed ’tasking’ ) at NWAS (Lancashire) to respond to the report of a collapsed hillwalker on Darwen Moor.
The call was answered by our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE, who collected the relevant information and then made a full team call out at 15.26hrs, with twenty team members and three team vehicles ultimately involved.

The collapsed hill walker, in the company of his dog, had been discovered by a passing solo female Fell runner, who dialled 999 and contacted the Emergency Services.

The North West Air Ambulance, ’Helimed 08’ responded and managed to land next to the casualty location, in the vicinity of Duckshaw Brook, near to Lords Hall (’The White House’) on the very top of Darwen Moor.
Unfortunately the 50 year old male, very well equipped hill walker (From Blackburn) had died, and the team was required to evacuate his body off the moor.

The team meanwhile had assembled at the stated NWAS (Lancashire) Ambulance RVP at Roddlesworth Information Centre, Tockholes, joining responding Lancashire Constabulary resources.

Our first team member, Paul Brain, arrived at this RVP at 15.35hrs, with other members and our responding emergency vehicles arriving quickly afterwards.

At circa 16.25hrs, all Bolton MRT, Police and Ambulance resources were requested to relocate to the Darwen side of the moor, with the RVP chosen being Lords Hall, high up on Darwen Moor.

By 17.00hrs all resources had relocated to this new RVP, whilst the NWAA ’Helimed 08’ remained on scene, with the deceased hill walker and the Fell Runner who had sadly found him.

The team was requested to escort Police and Ambulance staff to the incident scene on a moorland footpath, and then stretcher evacuate the deceased hill walker off the moor, and take care of his dog.

With the departure of NWAA ’ Helimed 08’ at circa 17.45hrs, the team then commenced the stretcher evacuation, with handover at 18.15hrs.

The team’s thanks are expressed to the owner of the hill top Lords Hall, for allowing all the emergency responding vehicles to park up within the property.
The team extends its full and sincere condolences to the family of the deceased hill walker.

The following resources were involved in this very sad and unfortunate incident ;
Bolton Mountain Rescue Team, 20 Team members on scene with another three stood down responding. Three Team Land Rover Mountain Rescue Ambulances also attended.
NWAS (Lancashire) Broughton Emergency Control Room and one Emergency Ambulance (Darwen Ambulance Station) with two crew members.

Lancashire Constabulary, Force Control Room, Two Police Officers from Darwen Police Station, two Detective Officers, one CSI Officer and a Police Photographer.

The following obituary appeared in the Lancashire Telegraph and in its on-line pages.

DAVID PAUL WIGGANS (Dave Wiggy) On April 7, 2011, suddenly on Darwen Moors, Dave aged 50 years. Beloved partner of Linda, precious son of Clifford and Eunice, loving dad of John and Louise and her partner Danny, dearly loved grandad of Katie and Macy, dear brother of Margaret, Michael, Kenneth and John also best friend of Dave Atkinson and loving master of Zak. Funeral service at Pleasington Crematorium on Friday, April 15 at 1 p.m. (No black to be worn by request). Family flowers only please, but if desired donations may be sent for the Bolton Mountain Rescue Team or North West Air Ambulance. c/o Ainswoth’s Funeral Service, Church Bank Street, Darwen. BB3 3HA. Tel 01254 873290