By: Blonde Two
Last week marked the 10th anniversary of the day that I dislocated and fractured my ankle on Dartmoor during a Ten Tors Challenge training session. We (Blonde One was there too) were at Redlake, a fairly remote location with dodgy mobile phone signal, and I needed a remote rescue, which came in the form of the Devon Air Ambulance. B1 and I are planning to visit the spot in the next couple of weeks but I thought it only appropriate to mark the occasion with a Tuesday’s Ten – things you might want to know about remote rescues…
- The Devon Air Ambulance flew its first mission in 1992 and started night flying in 2016.
2. In 2017, The Devon Air Ambulance assisted a grand total of 990 patients. 7% of these involved locations where there was no road access.
3. The Dartmoor Rescue Group consists of four teams, DSRT Tavistock, DSRT Ashburton, DSRT Okehampton and DSRT Plymouth, and celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2018.
4. Both organisations rely on fundraising to continue operation. All members of Dartmoor Search and Rescue teams are volunteers.
5. If you need a rescue from a remote location you should dial 999, ask for the Police then indicate that you need a remote rescue.
6. The more accurate the location you can give, the quicker your rescue will be. Always take a map and compass out with you and learn some basic navigation skills.
7. Carry a notebook so that you can record necessary information before you make your call for help: location (grid reference and description), injury or nature of the emergency, casualty details (age and gender), how many people in your party, your mobile phone number.
8. When outdoors in remote locations, your mobile phone should be kept for emergencies. You can set your phone up so that you can text for emergency assistance but you need to do this before you set off.
9. Help can’t always arrive straight away so carry emergency equipment to keep yourself safe while you wait. You should always have a first aid kit, emergency rations, warm clothing, a survival bag and/or shelter and a torch.
10. Once you have called for help, stay where you are if it is safe to do so.
We Blondes hope you never need to use the emergency advice above but there are few people who live or visit Devon who don’t know someone that has been helped by a remote rescue. We all need to contribute to support those who do so much to keep these services going…