The injured climber is stretchered from Rivelin Edge. Photo: Edale MRT

The injured climber is stretchered from Rivelin Edge. Photo: Edale MRT

New members of a mountain rescue team had a baptism of fire, with six rescues interrupting their planned final training assessment.

Four recruits to the Edale Mountain Rescue Team finally qualified as full members, after joining their experienced colleagues in a series of incidents.

The training programme ends with a full-on weekend of assessment, testing the trainees on all aspects of mountain rescue, including a night out in some of the area’s most challenging terrain.

But the team was called to help a mountain biker on Saturday morning who had crashed on a bridleway on Stanage Edge near Hathersage.

Team spokesman Martin Gorman said: “He was treated for head, chest, pelvis and possible spinal injuries.

“After being flown to hospital in Sheffield by the Yorkshire Air Ambulance he was found to have three fractures to his spine and multiple rib fractures.

“While team members and some of our trainees under assessment were dealing with this job, we were called to a fallen climber on Millstone Edge near Hathersage.

“Other team members and one of our vehicles were quickly diverted to deal with the second incident. Team members worked with the crew of the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance to treat the gentleman for possible back and head injuries before he was also sent to Sheffield for treatment.”

As the trainees prepared to resume their assessment, the team was called out a third time, to help Buxton MRT rescue a man who had a heart attack while walking in Monsal Dale.

Mr Gorman said: “He was recovered from the woods where he had been treated by East Midlands Ambulance Service staff and flown to hospital in Derby by the DLRAA.

“Finally, our new members were able to complete their daylight assessments before heading out for a night-navigation exercise and a short night’s sleep on the moors above the Derwent Valley.

“All four passed with flying colours, but before they had a chance to relax and enjoy their success the team was called out again. A climber had fallen on the crags at Burbage North.

“Once again our colleagues from DLRAA were on hand to fly the casualty to the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield.”

While the team was dealing with that incident, it was called to another fallen climber who suffered serious head, chest and spinal injuries in a 12m (40ft) fall on Rivelin Edge.

Mr Gorman said: “Once again we split our resources to deal with two simultaneous callouts. After treatment by Yorkshire Ambulance Service staff and team members, he was evacuated down to the road with the help of other climbers.

“The Yorkshire Air Ambulance then flew him the short distance to hospital.

“Finally, with some members already having been out with the team for 32 hours, the sixth and final call of the weekend saw the team making their way to the other end of our patch to assist a 12-year-old boy with a knee injury on Baslow Edge.

“Fortunately his injury was minor and he was carried off the hill and taken to hospital by his dad.”

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