CVSRT - February 2021

Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team would like to remind our local community to please adhere to the Government lockdown restrictions and only exercise locally to your home. Now is not the time to be venturing into the more remote parts of our countryside and potentially putting yourself in harm’s way.

Granted, accidents can happen to anyone, at any time, in any location (even close to home). By definition, an accident is an unfortunate incident that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, typically resulting in damage or injury.

If an accident happened to you in a remote, inaccessible location, would you know what to do? Before you set out on your next daily exercise, (or adventure when the time is right), please ask yourself:

  1. Do I have the knowledge and skills to accomplish the day?
  2. Do I have the right gear and spare kit if the weather changes or night falls?
  3. Do I know what the weather will be like?
  4. Does anyone know your plans for the day?

By planning ahead, preparing well and being aware of your environment, you could prevent an accident or should the worst happen, save your life.

In the event of an emergency and you require the assistance of a Mountain Rescue Team, please do not hesitate in making that call. We would rather initiate an emergency response and be stood down en-route, rather than not being called at all or alerted too late.

Dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Police, then Mountain Rescue.

PLEASE NOTE: Register your phone with www.emergencysms.net – this will enable you to contact the emergency services by SMS if required.

To help your rescuers pinpoint your location, you will need to provide a grid reference by using a map or via *OS Locate App or *What3Words App (*Note: Apps need installing on your smartphone prior to setting out). Once you have requested Mountain Rescue assistance, it is very important to stay where you are until the Mountain Rescue team have made contact.

Above all, please stay safe, exercise sensibly and #adventuresmart

 

A Few Facts About CVSRT

Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team (CVSRT) is a charity run by unpaid volunteers providing search and rescue support to the statutory emergency services in the northern half of West Yorkshire, including Calderdale, Airedale and part of Wharfedale. CVSRT operates within Mountain Rescue (England & Wales) guidelines, working on behalf of West Yorkshire Police.

During 2020, the team attended 96 callouts providing essential life-saving care to the community. We have four emergency response vehicles, strategically located in Halifax, Copley, Mytholmroyd and Todmorden ready to respond at a moment’s notice. Our team members come from all walks of life and live within the local community. Where appropriate and necessary, local team members will respond directly to an incident. This allows us to have boots on the ground and on-scene within 10-15 minutes providing initial medical assistance, with the full team response in attendance within 28mins of callout (on average in 2020).

Our Resources Include:

  • 50+ Operational Full Team Members (including Doctors & Paramedics)
  • 9 Flood Rescue Specialists
  • 7 MRSDE Search Dog Handlers
  • 4 MRSDE Search Dogs
  • 4 Trainee Search Dogs
  • 4 Specialist Vehicles
  • 1 Operational Support Team Member
  • 7 Support Team Members
  • Many Friends of CVSRT

CVSRT have been saving lives in wild and remote places since 1966.

 

Our Operational Area

CVSRT Operational Area    

 

Here’s a few extra tips to help you remain safe whilst out and about:

  • Charge your phone before you set off (and think about carrying a portable battery charger).
  • Carry a map and compass and know how to use them. Don’t rely on your smartphone apps for navigation! Using GPS and Navigation Apps will drain your phone batteries quickly leaving you without a phone when you really need it most.
  • Before leaving home, consider downloading the OS Locate App or the What3Words App to help you pinpoint your location in an emergency – remembering to cross check this location on your paper map before passing to the emergency services.
  • Carrying a headtorch, handheld torch and spare batteries are essential, or take a second torch so you don’t have to change batteries in the dark.
  • Have a good meal before you start and take plenty of food and water to refuel and keep hydrated during the day.
  • Remember if you stop for any reason, you will get cold very quickly. Make sure you have warm, windproof and waterproof clothing (and spares) – hat and gloves are essential. Wear several thin layers rather than one thick layer so you can add or remove them to maintain a comfortable temperature.
  • Carry a foil blanket or bivvy bag for emergencies.
#Congratulations Laura
 
In a normal year, members of Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team (CVSRT) gather on the last Tuesday in January to discuss business.  On the agenda for this meeting is the formality of welcoming all of our successful probationary (probie) members to the team as fully fledged operational members. 
 
#Congratulations Laura 
 
However, for everyone throughout the Calder Valley and beyond, the past year has been anything but normal. For our newest team member Laura, our only 2020 new recruit, her journey into the team followed this pattern and was very different than expected. 
 
Laura was already an active supporter of the team when she joined us as a probie member in January 2020 ready for the traditionally established process of undergoing a full 12 months of dedicated training. This training covers all the required basic core skills and culminates in a 14-hour scenario-based assessment before being welcomed as an operational member. 
This all changed in March when, as a result of the national lockdown, all face-to-face training was stopped. Shortly after this in April, the team unanimously agreed that the best approach to continue Laura’s training was to ‘throw her in at the deep end’ and add her to the callout list to be deployed on operational callouts with full support and supervision of the team.
 
Laura took to this approach of live training brilliantly and, alongside all of the online training, fit into the team quickly. The decision to welcome Laura as a full operational team member was therefore an easy one to make. 
 
Well done to Laura for her hard work and commitment and welcome to the team!

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© 2014 Calendar photography by Hanners www.hanrahanphotography.co.uk
© 2015 All other photography remains the property of Calder Valley Search & Rescue Team.