The two teams dealt with a record number of incidents last month. Photo: Northumberland NPMRT

The two teams dealt with a record number of incidents last month. Photo: Northumberland NPMRT

Two mountain rescue teams covering the North Pennines and the North-East responded to a record number of calls during August.

The volunteers of the Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue Team and North of Tyne Mountain Rescue Team dealt with 11 incidents during the past month.

The latest was to aid a walker in her 70s who failed to meet her husband as planned after her trip. The woman was reported missing to the police in the early hours of last Sunday after the man spent some time looking for his wife, whom he had been due to rendezvous with at 9pm the previous evening.

The rescue teams were called out about 3.25am. A Northumberland National Park MRT spokesperson said: “While a search plan was being developed, police located the lady on a drivable track in woods near to the coastal path in the Belford area.

“The walker had fallen sustaining minor injuries and was also suffering from the lower overnight temperature. She was assessed by a mountain rescue medic before being transported to hospital.”

The incident lasted 3½ hours and involved four mountain rescue volunteers.

The previous evening, the teams were contacted by police after two walkers reported themselves lost on the Cheviot Hills.

The rescuers used the Sarloc smartphone system to pinpoint their position.

The spokesperson said: “The walkers were on the south-east side of Hedgehope Hill. They were given guidance by phone and Sarloc was repeatedly used to ensure they were travelling in the right direction.

“The technology facilitated a rescue without any mountain rescue volunteers needing to head up the mountain. The walkers arrived back where they had started from in the Harthope Valley at 9.40pm, where they were met by police officers.”

Four mountain rescue volunteers were involved for 2½ hours.

Last Wednesday, the teams were asked to help Northumbria Police in the search for an overdue walker in the Haltwhistle area.

The team spokesperson said: “The male in his mid-20s had left home in Haltwhistle in the afternoon, with the intention of walking over Plenmeller Common towards Eals in the South Tyne valley, before returning along the valley to home, a distance of some 25 to 30km.

“All team members were placed on standby while a search plan was developed, during which time the walker returned home safely, albeit a little later than planned.”

The incident lasted just over two hours and involved three mountain rescue volunteers. A further 14 team members were ready to be deployed, and were stood down at midnight.

On the evening of Monday 22 August, the teams were called following reports of a fallen climber at Peel Crag with chest injuries.

Mountain rescue volunteers helped the crew of the Great North Air Ambulance, who initially treated the casualty, to carry the stretcher to the waiting helicopter. The incident lasted for 2 hours 20 minutes and involved nine mountain rescue team members.

The busy spell followed seven callouts earlier in the month.

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