The drone in action today. Photo: Police Scotland

The drone in action today

Police have used a drone in the search for a hillwalker who has been missing almost a month in the Highlands.

Repeated searches by mountain rescuers and helicopters have failed to find any trace of Eric Cyl, who went walking in Lochaber on 30 May.

Police officers today called in a pilot of a drone to search the area where they believe the walker may be.

Liam Anderstrem of Stirling flew his unmanned aerial system and recorded footage of less accessible areas in the continued hunt for Mr Cyl.

Chief Inspector Colin Gough, area commander for South Highland said: “Despite a fantastic response from a large number of search and rescue agencies from both the local area and across the country, the search for missing hillwalker Eric Cyl has sadly proved to be unsuccessful at this time.

Eric Cyl

Eric Cyl

“With the use of modern aviation technology, we can supplement search efforts by utilising resources such as in this particular circumstance, an unmanned drone, piloted by Mr Anderstrem. The use of such equipment means we can access otherwise inaccessible areas of the mountain range with no immediate risk to any search and rescue personnel.”

Mr Anderstrem said: “The drone can stream live video back to ground and provide a detailed view of areas possibly inaccessible or too dangerous. We have regulatory and technical restrictions that can have an impact on operations and of course safety is paramount, but the value drones can bring to search and rescue is clearly evident.”

Ch Insp Gough added: “Along with today’s search activity, we continue to review the ongoing search arrangements on a daily basis with support from both local specialist experts, teams and resources and operational support from across Police Scotland.

“I would also take this opportunity to appeal to anyone who has seen Mr Cyl on the hill or may have been out walking in the Ben Nevis, Glen Nevis or Mamores area and who may have seen someone fitting Mr Cyl’s description to contact Police Scotland on 101.”

Mr Cyl is described as aged 62, 5ft 10in (178cm), with short- to medium-length grey hair, wearing a blue Páramo sweatshirt, grey hooded waterproof jacket, dark trousers, navy Salomon boots, with a daysack and two Gelert walking poles.

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