Incident 45/2013

At 19.48hrs this evening, with strong winds, drifting snow and treacherous local road conditions (Away from major roads) the team was paged by NWAS (Lancashire) EOC Broughton, to attend to two separate incidents on the steep moorland fringe residential road of Foxholes Road, Horwich.

In both cases NWAs crews were having difficulty actually reaching the residential properties where the casualties needed help.

At 19.55hrs a full team pager call out was initiated, with all members asked to respond to our Ladybdrige Hall Base / HQ to travel to the two incidents on the same road, in all four of our Land Rover Mountain Rescue Ambulance vehicles.

Our first two Land Rovers with ten members on board departed together at 20.30hrs arriving on scene at 20.40hrs, just before which NWAS Control had stood us down from one of the two incidents, as the Ambulance crew had accessed the casualty.

With all four Land Rovers on scene and twenty team members present, our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE liaised with the Ambulance crew at the remaining incident.

A ninety three year old male with a serious medical condition giving cause for concern, needed to be stretcher evacuated from his house, down a very steep residential road (Foxholes Road) covered in deep snow and ice, and into the NWAs Emergency Ambulance (From Chorley Ambulance Station)

By 21.09hrs suitably protected from the elements outside, and on one of our specialist mountain rescue stretchers, the elderly man was carried down the road to the warmth of the waiting NWAS Emergency Ambulance, arriving at the Ambulance at 21.20hrs.

Such were the conditions underfoot, that all our responding team members involved in this operation were wearing either snow / ice chains on their boots or crampons.

At 21.25hrs under escort to the main road of our BM1 vehicle, the NWAS (Lancashire) Emergency Ambulance departed for Royal Bolton Hospital.

In total we had twenty team members actively involved on scene assisting the NWAS (Lancashire) Emergency Ambulance crew, and one team member at our Base / HQ as a Control / Reporting point.

(Team vehicles BM1, BM2, BM3, and BM$ all involved)

Footnote to Incident 45. On Monday 25th March 2013, the team received the following two very kind email messages from the two sisters of the man we assisted, which are reproduced in full here;

To the Team who assisted with getting Mr ****** to Hospital on Saturday evening 23rd March.
My sister and I would like to say a big ‘Thank you’ to those members of your team who turned out on Saturday evening to help the ambulance service get our elderly father from his home at the top of Foxholes Road, Horwich, to hospital. Living as we both do in London, we were not in any position to get to him, and were so very relieved and grateful for the help that was given to him. You will be pleased to hear that he is now stable and comfortable in hospital.
Yours with grateful thanks,
Mrs ***** and Mrs ******

Dear Sir/Madam,
Re: ****** of ***** Foxholes Road, Horwich, Bolton,
Are you able to confirm if it was your colleagues from the Bolton MRT who helped get my Father from his house, to a waiting ambulance which could not get up the road due to the snowy conditions on Saturday night 23rd March?

If so can I ask that you forward my sincere and grateful thanks to those members who attended him.

My sister and I both live in London, but will be travelling up today now that the conditions are better.

Naturally we want to make a monetary donation to support our appreciation for the self sacrifice made by your colleagues on this particular occasion.

Once again many thanks,
Mrs******** and Mrs*******