Incident 46/2011

At 17.53hrs early this evening, NWAS (Manchester) Belle Vue Control initially tried to contact our Team Leader directly, followed by actual contact with our Deputy Team Leader Geoff Seddon, requesting the teams assistance following a request for such from an Emergency Ambulance crew (From Salford Ambulance Station) who had directly requested the team due to the location of a casualty in the Prestwich Forest Park area in the River Irwell Valley.

A full team pager call out was initiated at 17.58hrs, with NWAS (Manchester) Belle Vue Control also requesting GMFRS assistance to grant their Emergency Ambulance access to the rough surfaced track network leading to the casualty site, which was barred by a locked barrier gate.

A GMFRS Fire Appliance quickly arrived on scene in advance of the NWAS Ambulance, gained entry through the locked barrier, and accessed the casualty site as close as the Fire Appliance could get, some fire crew members then walking to the casualty site, which was located alongside a short steep rocky feeder stream into the River Irwell.

Our first team members arrived at the Buckley Lane (End of) Prestwich, roadside RVP at 18.15hrs, with two team members travelling in the NWAS Emergency Ambulance via the track network through the Prestwich Forest Park, ultimately managing to park very close to the casualty site. (Despite this closeness, the casualty site was in a difficult to reach location, across a small rocky stream course, with a (Rock step) drop to the actual site)

The NWAS crew, our first responding members and three GMFRS fire fighters on scene then commenced immediate casualty care.

The 49 years old male casualty (From the Blackley area of Manchester) had been out in the company of his son dog walking together, when he unfortunately slipped, sustaining a very painful suspected lower leg / ankle fracture.

Three of our Land Rover Mountain Rescue Vehicles then accessed the immediate area of the casualty site, bringing further mountain rescue personnel to the location. (A further Land Rover Mountain Rescue Vehicle remained at the Buckley Lane RVP).

By 18.45hrs, the casualty, following splinting of his injury and the administration of pain killing gas, was loaded onto one of our SAR Alpine Lite Mountain Rescue stretchers, and in a joint operation on scene between the two NWAS Ambulance crew, the three GMFRS Firefighters present, a GMFRS Officer and (by now) sixteen team members, the injured man was carried up the short section of the rocky stream course and placed into the NWAS Emergency Ambulance by 18.50hrs.

He was then transferred to hospital.

By 19.30hrs, all the Emergency Services present had cleared the location.
The following resources were involved in this incident;

  • NWAS (Manchester); Belle Vue Emergency Control Room, and an Emergency Ambulance (Two crew) from Salford Ambulance Station.
  • GMFRS; One Pump Appliance from Whitefield Fire Station (Five crew) and a Station Commander as the GMFRS Officer in Charge.
  • Bolton Mountain Rescue Team; Four Team Land Rover Mountain Rescue Ambulances, Twenty three team members on scene, of which sixteen were at the casualty site with an additional seven on hold at the Buckley Lane RVP in case of need. A further five team members were stood down responding to this incident. (In total twenty eight members responded)

This was an excellent example of joint Emergency Services multi-agency working, working very efficiently together to effect a timely and proficient rescue from an awkward to reach casualty site.