A VOLUNTEER rescue team has been kept busy over the festive period assisting at medical emergencies.

On Boxing Day night Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team were contacted by the police control room and asked to assist with a search for a missing young adult in the Catterick Garrison area. As team members drove to their base, a team member spotted the missing person and he was safely reunited with his family.

While the general public were still enjoying their extended Christmas holiday, Wednesday, December 30 turned out to be a busy day for the team. At just after 1pm they were contacted by the Ambulance Service. They were asked to attend to an incident on a remote track above East Witton where a walker had fallen and sustained a lower limb injury. Soon on scene, the team quickly located the walker and her party. After administering first aid, she was taken to a waiting ambulance in East Witton village.

Just over an hour later whilst the casualty from the previous incident was being handed over, the team were contacted for a second time by the Ambulance Service. This time support was requested for recovery of a casualty from a remote path near Wensley. On arrival they were meet by a team member who was part of the ambulance crew assigned to the response.

It was quickly established what was required to support the injured person, who had also sustained a lower leg injury after a fall. The casualty was loaded onto a stretcher and taken to the waiting ambulance.

As the second job of the day was nearing completion, a third call from ambulance control came through. Reports had been received of a casualty above Askrigg on the top of the fell, who had a suspected back injury due to a sledging accident.

Road closure signs due to snow and ice were soon overcome by the emergency team, who established the route was passable and were quickly on scene.

The injured party was treated, loaded into a vac mattress and stretcher then taken by a team vehicle to waiting medics in Askrigg.

With the New Year only two days old the team were turned out by to reports of a casualty in the Richmond area who had sustained injuries while sledging in the open area above Reeth Road. Team members were soon on scene supporting ambulance staff until additional vehicles and equipment arrived. The injured person was packaged in a vacuum mattress, placed in a bell stretcher and recovered to the waiting ambulance.

The team is a 100 per cent volunteer-run charity, relying on financial assistance to maintain and equip its complex and professionally-run operation.

Members are fundraising for a new incident command vehicle to provide a crucial part of an ability to provide a vital 24/7 rescue service.

To help with a donation see the Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team website or contact them at: appeal@swaledalemrt.org.uk.