2023: 51 Callouts | 2022: 61 Callouts

January Practice Weekend

The 27th & 28th January 2024 saw our first full practice weekend of the year. As well as regular Wednesday night training sessions we run at least five practice weekend’s per year plus various specialist training sessions such as for technical rope rescues and water & flood rescues.

For this weekend we were joined by seven of our new Probationers who all took a full and active part in the exercises. They will shortly be going onto the call-out list and will be issued with Team clothing as they start their probationary year, working alongside their more experienced colleagues.

This weekend we were based at Square Corner, near Osmotherley, and despite Saturday being interrupted by a call-out (see our previous post 4/2024) we were still able to undertake a lengthy search of moorland looking for a ‘lost walker’. He was found by a search party in mid-afternoon (having suffered a nasty ‘leg injury’) meaning that we had to relocate the other search parties to his location and get our Team vehicles and some personal vehicles into position to assist with his extraction. As he was at the bottom of a short but steep incline we set up a back-up rope system to ensure his safety whilst carrying him up to level ground at which point he staged a miraculous recovery and was able to walk back to his car!

After a ‘kit check’, Sunday morning took the form of a light-hearted ‘competitive’ navigation exercise with points for navigating, providing correct bearings and recovering ‘missing’ items before returning to the RV-point for a brief break for lunch.

To finish the day off we were joined by Tim and Helen from Swaledale MRT – Tim brought search dog Cassie and trainee search dog Jem to talk about the training that the dogs undergo and to demonstrate how a dog search is conducted. As we haven’t had any Cleveland MRT search dogs for a while, it was a useful refresher for most members and something new for our Probationers. Many thanks to Tim & Helen for giving up their spare time. We are fortunate to have the support a number of search dogs and their handlers from MRSDE North-East.

Many thanks to the all the passers-by who made so many complimentary comments about the Team’s work. Next week – back to Wednesday night training and, for some, winter-skills training next weekend in Scotland!

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Applications can be made to join the team in a support role (Operational Support) or as a hill going (Search and Rescue) member.

Applications for either role can be made at any time. Intakes for Operational Support members occur at various times of the year. There is one annual intake for Search and Rescue normally each September.

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