The Land Rover's roll cage protected the team members from worse injuries. Photo: Keswick MRT

The Land Rover's roll cage protected the team members from worse injuries. Photo: Keswick MRT

A Lake District team has suffered the loss of a vital rescue vehicle after it rolled over during a callout to a man in difficulties.

Five Keswick Mountain Rescue Team volunteers suffered minor injuries in the incident on Saturday, but the Land Rover in which they were travelling was damaged beyond repair.

Despite the alarming accident, the team was still able to respond to a second callout a short time later.

Keswick MRT was alerted about 12.55pm after a local adventure company contacted police and requested their help with a 61-year-old man who became unwell while gill scrambling in Stoneycroft Beck in Newlands. The team said the normally fit and healthy man had a potentially serious medical condition.

A team spokesperson said: “A team Land Rover with five members set off from base and a number of others went direct to the scene.

“On driving up the Stoneycroft track the Land Rover slipped off the dirt road and rolled down the steep slope landing back on the Newlands road on its wheels. Fortunately, thanks to the design of the Land Rover and its fitted roll cage, the five occupants escaped with relatively minor injuries.

“Meantime the team members who had gone direct along with a team paramedic and an emergency doctor were able to attend to the casualty who was assessed and evacuated back to the valley to be transported to hospital by air ambulance.

The walker was rescued after getting stuck on Sharp Edge. Photo: Keswick MRT

The walker was rescued after getting stuck on Sharp Edge. Photo: Keswick MRT

“The team Land Rover performed faultlessly in protecting its occupants but was left in a rather bad state with all external equipment including a stretcher and telescopic radio mast destroyed.

“The equipment inside survived but the vehicle itself is beyond economic repair. This leaves the team short of one of its main response vehicles and the team compromised until a replacement can be sought as soon as possible.”

The callout involved 18 Keswick MRT volunteers and lasted a little over two hours.

The team was in action again the same afternoon.

The spokesperson said: “Shortly after returning to base and dealing with the loss of the Land Rover, redistributing kit and making provisions as best as possible, the second callout came in.

“A couple were on Sharp Edge on Blencathra when part way along the traverse the lady became paralysed with fear and was unable to move.

“A small team left base and climbed quickly to Sharp Edge where a rope was set up, the lady helmeted and harnessed then assisted back up to the ridge and down the north side to what is known as the ‘Chicken Path’ then escorted down to safer ground.”

The incident involved nine Keswick MRT members and lasted just over 2¾ hours.

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