Episode 20 Real Rescues


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Episode 20

Nick Knowles and Louise Minchin follow the work of the emergency services. In this episode, a ferocious grass fire melts all around it as it threatens to engulf homes.


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Today on Real Rescues, some grass has caught fire,

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doesn't sound much but wait until you see this.

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It's throwing heat out at well over 1,000 degrees,

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melting road signs and the road surface itself.

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I was just so, so frightened,

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because I could see the way the fire was going

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and if they didn't stop it, we really were in trouble.

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And a seven-year-old boy acts beyond his years

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when his mum collapses at home, giving a 999 call-taker

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more than she bargained for.

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Hello and welcome to Real Rescues.

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This is the Abingdon Police Control Centre in Oxfordshire.

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The area they cover is vast.

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Millions rely on the skills of the people in this room.

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Today, we'll be spending time on the front line, with the police,

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ambulance, fire crews and Mountain Rescue

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as they respond to real emergencies.

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Let's get started on our first story.

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Thousands of tonnes of three-metre high elephant grass

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cut and stored in a field has caught fire.

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Now the wall of flames threatens to engulf a nearby country house.

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The fire is so hot that when the owner of the house

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walked down to take a look, her apron actually started to melt.

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The fight is on to save her home and contain this massive fire.

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Flames more than 12 metres high and 150 metres across.

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Looking like something from a movie, this is in fact

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a 2,200 tonne heap of elephant grass that is completely ablaze.

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Firefighters are struggling to stop it from spreading

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and endangering nearby homes, one of which belongs to Margaret Gibbons.

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I'd been doing some housework

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with my back to the conservatory.

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After a minute or two, I thought, "What's that crackling noise?"

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I turned round and all I could see was a huge wall of flame.

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I went outside and all I could see was flames again.

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I got halfway down the drive, I couldn't get any nearer.

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The first person I saw was Roger Smith.

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Seeing the size of his task,

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fire incident commander Roger Smith is trying to clear the area.

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He came towards me and said, "You must go back, you must go back.

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"It's too dangerous."

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She had a plastic apron on and believe you me,

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the plastic apron was starting to melt.

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I thought perhaps I'd better go back!

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Elephant grass grows up to three metres tall and is used

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as biofuel because of the extreme heat it creates when burning.

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I've been in the service for 45 years

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and I've never experienced a fire so intense.

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The heat, the radiated heat from it, was well over 1,000 degrees.

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Knowing they can't possibly stop the inferno,

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the fire crews work to contain it as much as possible.

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We needed a large supply of water.

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Appliances only carry just over 2,000 litres each

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and with a fire of that severity,

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that amount of water doesn't last very long.

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We found out that there was a pool approximately half a mile

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from the site which we could put the light pumping unit into

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and pump water down onto the fire ground.

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I've got an old wooden summerhouse

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and the hedge was on fire just four feet away from it.

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They were very good. They made sure a crew stayed on the lawn

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and was spraying the back of it.

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Over 50 firefighters have been involved and after three hours,

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they are confident they've stopped any chance of the blaze spreading.

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Their job now is to keep an eye on the heat to make sure

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it burns out safely overnight, but the events of the day

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are seared into Margaret's memory.

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I was just so, so frightened.

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So frightened because I could see the way the fire was going

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and if they didn't stop it, we really were in trouble.

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I love my garden. I'm thankful I've still got it.

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It's only thanks to our lovely firemen.

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Later in the programme, we'll look at the big forest fires

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that swept across the UK, and one in particular where firefighters

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used 20 miles of hosepipes to get it under control.

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Some accidents are so traumatic

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that the casualties just can't remember them.

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When two sisters are trapped in their car

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after it's collided side on with a large truck,

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one knows exactly what happened, the other can't remember a thing.

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PC Steve Wootton is fighting through the traffic

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after an emergency call has come in.

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I'm on the way to a two-vehicle road traffic collision.

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As I understand at this moment in time,

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we've got possibly one or two people trapped in the cars.

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He arrives at a scene of high activity.

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Doctor's here, everything is in place.

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They're just cutting the top off.

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A heavy collision between a truck and a Ford Fiesta

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has sent both vehicles careening across the road.

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The truck driver is shaken up and being examined for possible whiplash

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but the main concern is for the two women who need to be cut out of the car,

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24-year-old Sophie and her 18-year-old sister Zoe.

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Dr Steve Smallwood has been treating the pair

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who have both been fitted with neck collars.

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If a truck's involved in the accident

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then because it's bigger and heavier, there's more energy

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and you're far more likely to have serious injuries in your patients.

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Both the driver and passenger had a risk of fractures,

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broken bones in the spine, which if it's not handled correctly

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can cause a risk of paralysis.

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While the medical team treat the two casualties,

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Steve Wootton and his fellow police colleagues have acted quickly

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to help give the crew space to work in.

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We're going to close the road off

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because we've got ambulances arriving

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and we need to ensure they're safe

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and ensure the safety of everybody at the scene.

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And off camera, Steve will soon need his powers of reassurance

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when a distraught young woman called Claire approaches

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saying she's the girls' sister.

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-Which is your sister?

-Both of them!

-They're OK.

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-They're being looked after by a doctor and a paramedic.

-Yes, yes.

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Don't panic, OK? They're taking the roof off. It's all precautionary.

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I'd just seen ambulances, fire engines, cars, people talking.

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Just ran to them as quick as I could run,

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got there and I couldn't breathe. Didn't have my inhaler with me.

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Gibbering wreck, crying, trying to explain to them

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that they're my two sisters.

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Whilst they reassure Claire, Dr Smallwood is most worried

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about the condition of the youngest sister.

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Zoe was most distressed

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and she had some bruising on her chest from the seat belt.

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She was also getting a lot of pain from around her pelvis and hips.

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We had to take precautions in case she had broken her pelvis,

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because if you do that, you get a lot of internal bleeding

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which is going to put her at risk.

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Steve has given Zoe morphine to help with the pain,

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but before they can risk moving her,

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the team need to fit her with a pelvic splint.

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A large Velcro bandage is tightened around the waist

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to try and hold any potential broken bones in place.

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In the meantime, Steve has another family member to comfort.

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The mother of the girls in the car has arrived.

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She's quite upset and I had to calm her down.

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She's going to see her daughters and hopefully give them reassurance.

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A former A&E nurse, Kerry knows

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she needs to appear strong for her daughters' sake.

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'As I got closer, I could see both girls were moving'

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and I could hear Zoe crying, so I knew she was at least breathing.

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I did calm a little and I managed to get on top of my emotions

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so I kind of put my nursing head back on.

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While Claire goes to Sophie, Mum tries to relax Zoe.

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'Sophie was coping, Zoe wasn't. She'd got rib pain.'

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If you're screaming and crying and you've got pain in your ribs,

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it makes that pain worse so it's kind of a vicious circle.

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Zoe and her sisters, mother and other sister, were all very calm

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despite the worry and the distress of it,

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and they helped calm Zoe and her sister down,

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which did help with managing them

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and getting them out of the car as comfortably as possible.

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The combination of family support

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and the pain-killing morphine taking effect means they can

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carefully ease Zoe from the car onto a long board and into the ambulance.

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Next, the same delicate procedure is repeated with Sophie,

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the team taking great care

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to keep her neck and back as straight as possible.

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Sophie and I work for an insurance company dealing with claims where

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people are in a motor accident and are injured.

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To be on the other side of the story was hard to get my head round.

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Hospital tests will confirm the exact nature of their injuries

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but considering they've been hit by a truck,

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the two sisters appear fortunate not to be more seriously hurt.

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All the same, it's been a distressing experience for the entire family.

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All you want to do is to give them a cuddle and tell them that they're going to be all right.

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They looked after my babies very well for me,

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because no matter how big and ugly they get, they're still my babies.

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Sophie's here with us now.

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We've just been watching that together, Sophie.

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-What's strange for you though is you literally can't remember one minute, can you?

-Not a thing.

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It's like a bunch of cleaners have walked into my brain and gone,

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"Don't need to remember that. Let's just get rid of that.

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"A complete disaster, let's forget about it."

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Even watching it back, that moment where you're getting out of the car

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and all the rest of it, you didn't have a bang on your head

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-but no memory of it whatsoever?

-No, we think my head's come into contact

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with the inside of the window because the inside of my face is all scratched

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but actually remembering things, I don't remember people talking to me.

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I just remember sensations like a fireman holding my head

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and the sounds of the saws on the car and stuff,

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but actual things about what happened, it's all a bit of a blur.

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And you've got a specific time missing as well?

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I just about remember getting into my car and starting to drive, which was about ten to eight.

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The first vague thing I remember is asking my sister,

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who turned up next to me, Claire, "What time is it?"

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She was like, "It's half past ten."

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I got into the car 10 minutes ago and I've lost over two hours' worth of time in my brain.

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-Just completely gone.

-When you woke up in the car,

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-where did you think you were?

-I thought I was on my sofa at home.

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I thought I'd fallen asleep in the middle of the day.

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"I've fallen asleep, I didn't want to do that! I don't recognise the wallpaper,"

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which was the truck embedded in the side of the car.

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This isn't my alarm tone, it's the horn going off

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and my sister screaming, going, "No, I'm in the car.

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"Why have I fallen asleep in the car?

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"That truck wasn't there before."

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It took a good 15-20 minutes to realise I'd been hit by a truck.

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What have the doctors said? Have they said it's a good thing

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-you don't remember things?

-It's a coping mechanism for your brain

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to be able to take away a traumatic event.

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If you don't remember it, you can't stress over it.

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That's exactly what my brain's done to that. No need to remember that,

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we'll file that in the never need to remember section of the brain.

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That's it, it's gone forever, you think?

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I've had no snippets, no little bits of it coming back,

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not even flashbacks. Nothing, it's completely gone.

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-Complete static.

-How extraordinary and brilliant as well. Thank you very much. Nick?

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Isn't the human body an absolutely fantastic thing, coping mechanisms like that?

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I wanted to introduce you to Graham. Here's Graham here.

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He's one of the control operators here. Can I interrupt you?

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-You're not on a call?

-No.

-Lovely. Tell us about...

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Before you were taking calls here, you were a police officer, yes?

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That's right, yeah.

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And when you were a police officer, you had an incident -

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we were talking about this earlier -

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where somebody recognised a boat was parked the wrong way in the river.

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I didn't even know you could park a boat the wrong way round.

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Nor did I until that day. It was one of my colleagues.

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He was out on patrol with the sergeant. He noticed that there

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was a rowing boat tied up the wrong way round on the River Thames.

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He realised there was something wrong,

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because he was quite good at his job.

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He decided to, very quickly, go around the other side of the river,

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cross the river, and investigate what he thought might well be

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a burglary at the cricket club.

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I was in the office, so I despatched another unit as well.

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Together they went there and found persons inside the cricket club...

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-In progress?

-..breaking into the machines.

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Whereupon there was a foot pursuit across the cricket ground...

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I love that expression! "Whereupon there was a pursuit."

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-Basically everyone legging it in every direction!

-Absolutely, yeah.

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Across the cricket ground and one of the offenders

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went to try and get in his boat and missed.

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HE LAUGHS End up in the river?

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He did, he ended up in the river and promptly went to the bottom

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because he had all the coins in his pocket.

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Really? Pockets full of coins?

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Pockets full of coins from the machines, so he went to the bottom.

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I think he discarded some of those coins rather quickly.

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-Bobbed up to the surface?

-Came back up, yeah,

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and was consequently arrested, as was the other offender.

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There you go. Thank you very much.

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I'll let you get back to your calls.

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I thought that was one of the most fantastic stories I'd heard.

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It's amazing what you can find out as you go around the office here.

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Moving on, on this programme we often hear children

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acting more calmly than adults. Listen to this call.

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Young Lee starts out sounding like the seven-year-old boy he is,

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but ends up handling the situation with the maturity of a grown man.

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CRYING IN THE BACKGROUND

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LAUGHING: Three kids, but not having any more.

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See, that's finished and done with!

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It's a light-hearted moment,

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but Jess knows that seven-year-old Lee now has to look after his mum.

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MURMURING

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The lovely call-taker you could hear there was Jess Parsons,

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who can't join us today, but I'm very pleased to say that Lee

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and Angie, and sister Georgia have been able to come along and join us today.

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If I start with Lee first, you were very good on that call, weren't you?

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Yeah.

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So how did you learn to do all that stuff and look after your mum?

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Well, my mum learned me when I was a baby.

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She learned me what I had to say and that, cos it was very important,

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so she told me what I had to say.

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It is very important. I wanted to ask you,

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did your mum talk about not having any more babies before?

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Cos you said that on the phone.

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Yeah, she says she's had three babies, what I said on the phone,

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and she said she'd just have three babies.

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-That's enough, is it?

-That's enough.

-The three of you is enough?

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-Does she say that a lot?

-I don't know, really.

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But Georgia helped out.

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Georgia, what did you do to help out?

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I took Aaron upstairs to play in my room.

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Why did you? Because it wasn't just you in the room, was it?

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Who was up there with you?

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Um, my baby brother.

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Baby brother, who's how old? How old's the baby brother?

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-He's two.

-He was one at the time.

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Extraordinary lad, like he knows everything about everything.

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Yeah. Yeah, very clever.

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You set out to teach him about this cos you knew you had this problem?

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Yeah, I think he was about three years old

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when we started teaching him,

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and he just took to it straightaway.

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Stuff like, "Can you role her over?" "I don't know. She's close to the door, I don't want to hurt her."

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-Yeah.

-That's incredible, isn't it?

-Yeah, it is.

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So what do you want to do when you grow up?

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-I'm going to live with my mum.

-Oh, are you?

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-To look after her?

-Yeah.

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-Ah, that's very nice.

-Both of us are going to do it cos I said it in the first place.

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OK, and maybe you could be like an ambulance person or a doctor, what do you think?

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-Yeah.

-You'll have to work hard at school.

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-I know.

-Do you work hard at school?

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-Yeah.

-All right. Thanks for coming in and talking to us,

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really lovely to talk to you all, and well done, you.

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Right, Louise?

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Now to a teenager as tough as they come.

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17-year-old Lyndzey hurt her ankle on a two-day hike through the Lake District.

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Unknown to her, she's broken it in two places,

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but soldiered on regardless.

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It's the next day, and the pain is so intense she can't move.

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It's a job for Mountain Rescue.

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SIREN WAILS

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It's mid-morning when Cockermouth Mountain Rescue Team get the call.

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They head out to Scarth Gap,

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a pass that rises over 1,000 feet above sea level.

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Every moment is captured on team leader Mike Park's helmet camera.

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The team know this terrain well.

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17-year-old Lyndzey is about halfway up the mountain

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and she can't carry on.

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They have to cover two miles uphill to get to her,

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carrying all their first aid and rescue equipment.

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We'll be carrying the casualty care sack

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to initially deal with the injuries,

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which will have splints in and the usual first aid kit.

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And we take an Entonox on the hill,

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which is nitrous oxide, a painkiller.

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A comfort sack, which is a big sleeping bag.

0:20:320:20:35

It's rough terrain, but popular with hikers.

0:20:370:20:40

Lyndzey was on a weekend scouting hike.

0:20:400:20:42

Her ankle's so painful she just can't walk on it.

0:20:420:20:45

As they climb higher, the bright spring weather starts to turn against them.

0:20:450:20:51

They know only too well how quickly conditions can deteriorate.

0:20:510:20:55

'It was a reasonably mild day,'

0:20:570:20:59

in the valley, but once we were up at 1,000 feet

0:20:590:21:02

it quite quickly turned cold.

0:21:020:21:04

'We always have in the back of our minds that hypothermia

0:21:040:21:07

'is going to be a secondary problem here.'

0:21:070:21:09

It takes just 30 minutes to cover the two miles to the stricken hiker.

0:21:090:21:14

Lyndzey's being looked after by two Scout leaders

0:21:140:21:16

and some walkers who've stopped to help.

0:21:160:21:19

Hi, Lyndzey, you all right? What have you done with it?

0:21:190:21:22

Yesterday I fell loads of times and it hurt this morning,

0:21:220:21:26

but I just carried on walking, came out anyway again,

0:21:260:21:29

and I can't walk on it.

0:21:290:21:31

Right, so you haven't actually fallen down on it,

0:21:310:21:33

-you've just caught it, have you?

-I fell down yesterday.

0:21:330:21:37

It's taken a lot to stop Lyndzey in her tracks.

0:21:370:21:39

She fell as she was competing in a walking team event.

0:21:390:21:42

Despite the pain, she refused to let her friends down by stopping.

0:21:420:21:48

'We started going up the first rock face in the morning,

0:21:480:21:50

'and my ankle was really sore. I kept twisting it again and again.'

0:21:500:21:55

It was just getting really unbearable.

0:21:550:21:58

But I didn't say anything to my team members,

0:21:580:22:01

because I knew that they'd want to stop, so I just carried on.

0:22:010:22:04

An hour has passed since Lyndzey collapsed.

0:22:040:22:07

She remembers how cold she was feeling.

0:22:070:22:10

The grey clouds started coming on. It was something like a film,

0:22:100:22:14

'it really was. It started to get really, really cold.

0:22:140:22:17

'I was just sat there'

0:22:170:22:18

and my fingers felt like they were going to drop off.

0:22:180:22:22

'I had to keep borrowing clothes off people to try and keep warm.'

0:22:220:22:25

I kept shivering. I was nearly crying at one point because I really was that cold.

0:22:250:22:29

The mountain rescuers are well prepared.

0:22:380:22:40

They set up a tent around her to reduce the risk of hypothermia.

0:22:400:22:43

She's putting on a brave face, but there's every chance

0:22:500:22:53

Lyndzey's ankle is broken, and it's extremely painful.

0:22:530:22:57

'It was like a shooting pain'

0:22:570:22:59

but it was continuous, it wouldn't go away.

0:22:590:23:02

But then I did have a pain up my leg, as well.

0:23:020:23:05

'I think that was just because I had been using my muscles a lot

0:23:050:23:08

'in the last few days, so that sort of added to the pain.'

0:23:080:23:13

My whole leg ached and my ankle pain just wouldn't go away. I just wanted it to stop.

0:23:130:23:18

She's been given Entonox to help relieve the pain

0:23:200:23:22

while Martin checks her ankle over.

0:23:220:23:25

VOICE ON RADIO

0:23:250:23:29

Martin is going to immobilise her leg in a splint

0:23:290:23:32

before she's moved down the mountain,

0:23:320:23:35

and that is going to hurt.

0:23:350:23:37

Whenever we were talking to her explaining what kind of things

0:23:380:23:42

we were going to do next and that it might be a little bit painful,

0:23:420:23:44

she was quick to tell us she'd be fine,

0:23:440:23:46

she'd grit her teeth and get on with it.

0:23:460:23:48

Despite the pain,

0:23:560:23:57

Lyndzey is able to appreciate her rescuers' sense of humour.

0:23:570:24:01

'They were really calm.'

0:24:040:24:06

All the men were really calm, really bubbly.

0:24:060:24:09

'You know, trying to make light of the situation, as such.'

0:24:090:24:14

Keep me calm, make sure they were still doing their job.

0:24:140:24:17

But they were really nice, tried to make me laugh and giggle,

0:24:170:24:21

just make light of the situation, really. They were lovely.

0:24:210:24:24

The splint will prevent any more damage being done to the nerves

0:24:240:24:29

and tissue in Lyndzey's leg,

0:24:290:24:31

but she still has to travel 1,000 feet down the mountainside.

0:24:310:24:36

She's going to have to put her trust entirely in the strength

0:24:360:24:39

and experience of her rescuers to get her safely to level ground

0:24:390:24:43

and the waiting ambulance.

0:24:430:24:45

As we'll see later in the programme,

0:24:470:24:48

they have a very unusual way of getting Lyndzey

0:24:480:24:50

back down the mountain, and it's not the way they came up.

0:24:500:24:54

Still to come on Real Rescues,

0:24:560:24:58

a proud dad has his dedication put to the test

0:24:580:25:00

when he's flattened by his own son at a basketball game.

0:25:000:25:05

-How was the game going, any good?

-Oh, don't talk about it.

0:25:050:25:07

-Is this the guy that fell on you?

-No, he's my son.

0:25:070:25:11

Well, I hope it wasn't! Was it you?

0:25:110:25:13

I want to introduce you to a chap called Nick Reck,

0:25:170:25:20

who is a radio operator here.

0:25:200:25:21

There are call takers, radio operators, all different titles.

0:25:210:25:25

Nick's got a little story for us about an incident

0:25:250:25:28

that happened on a farm with a stolen car.

0:25:280:25:30

Yeah, that's right.

0:25:300:25:32

It was a few weeks back. A gentleman had his car stolen from a farm.

0:25:320:25:35

He turned around and saw the car driving off.

0:25:350:25:38

-Literally saw it going away?

-Yeah.

-OK.

0:25:380:25:40

The unusual thing about this was he was more interested in his dog

0:25:400:25:45

that was in the car than the car itself.

0:25:450:25:47

You would be, I suppose, wouldn't you?

0:25:470:25:49

Yeah, so in the log it said,

0:25:490:25:51

before we had any information about the car,

0:25:510:25:53

the vehicle index and what have you,

0:25:530:25:55

we got the fact the dog's name was Yogi.

0:25:550:25:57

Important information! How do you go about tracking it down?

0:25:570:26:00

He's obviously seen it go. Have you got any chance of catching it quickly?

0:26:000:26:04

We captured the car about 30 minutes later on one of our ANPR cameras.

0:26:040:26:10

And what's that?

0:26:100:26:11

ANPR is like an Automatic Number Plate Recognition system.

0:26:110:26:14

It takes photographs of number plates and then we can track

0:26:140:26:17

the vehicle anywhere within the force where these cameras are based.

0:26:170:26:20

So when you got the car, was the dog still with it?

0:26:200:26:23

The dog was found about two hours later,

0:26:230:26:25

a couple of miles away from the owner's house.

0:26:250:26:29

Lovely, so the farmer and dog were reunited in the end?

0:26:290:26:32

Fortunately they were, yeah.

0:26:320:26:34

The thieves had seen the dog and kicked it out

0:26:340:26:36

-before they were actually caught later on?

-It looks that way.

0:26:360:26:39

Well, a happy ending to the story, at least.

0:26:390:26:42

That Automatic Number Plate Recognition system

0:26:420:26:44

is a clever piece of kit that we can show you now.

0:26:440:26:46

Louise is outside.

0:26:460:26:48

What we've got here, Nick, is an undercover unmarked police car.

0:26:480:26:52

It has a camera on board, also the ANPR computer, as well.

0:26:520:26:56

And hopefully Matt can show me how it works.

0:26:560:26:58

-Hi, Matt.

-Hiya.

0:26:580:27:00

OK, what do you do with this piece of kit then?

0:27:000:27:02

This system records every number plate that goes past the car.

0:27:020:27:05

It checks that number plate against a number of databases,

0:27:050:27:08

so it'll tell you if there's no tax, if the car's uninsured,

0:27:080:27:12

if it's known to police for any reason or if it's stolen.

0:27:120:27:15

I've been out on one of these raids, the police did a roadblock, it's incredibly quick.

0:27:150:27:19

We're going to try and demonstrate. We've got a car going to drive past,

0:27:190:27:23

and we'll see how quickly it shows up here on the monitor.

0:27:230:27:25

The car's going...

0:27:250:27:27

And here it is. It's gone straight through.

0:27:270:27:30

I couldn't read that number plate,

0:27:300:27:31

but it's got a picture of it. What's it telling you?

0:27:310:27:34

That's telling us that car that's just gone past is a stolen vehicle

0:27:340:27:37

that has been used in a bank robbery in the High Street.

0:27:370:27:39

We've done that for demonstration purposes, as we couldn't use the database today.

0:27:390:27:43

Yes. It's checked that number plate against all the databases

0:27:430:27:47

and it's saying that vehicle has been used for that offence.

0:27:470:27:50

At which point you'd chuck me out the car and go and catch them?

0:27:500:27:53

Yeah, if it was a real-life situation

0:27:530:27:55

we'd go straight after it now, catch up with it and deal with it.

0:27:550:27:58

It's also used, presumably, to find missing people?

0:27:580:28:00

Yeah, if someone's missing, their vehicle can be added to the database,

0:28:000:28:04

and if it goes past any police vehicles that have this kit fitted

0:28:040:28:07

we can stop it and deal with them as necessary.

0:28:070:28:09

-Very interesting. Thanks for showing me.

-No problem.

0:28:090:28:12

A fierce battle between two basketball teams has led

0:28:120:28:15

to a broken bone, but it's one of the spectators, a loyal dad,

0:28:150:28:18

who's been clobbered in action by the son he came to watch.

0:28:180:28:21

Paramedic Danny Millen and his colleague Oliver Hunt

0:28:270:28:30

have just arrived at Bournemouth University.

0:28:300:28:33

The accident's happened in the sports hall,

0:28:330:28:35

but the injured man's a little older than they're expecting.

0:28:350:28:38

There's a basketball game going on, a 52-year-old male.

0:28:380:28:41

A basketball player pretty much landed on him and he heard his clavicle snap.

0:28:410:28:45

So it's a spectator, not a player, who's been injured.

0:28:460:28:50

Although there is a basketball player in the office,

0:28:500:28:53

it's his dad who's in agony.

0:28:530:28:55

-What's happened?

-I broke my collarbone, I think.

-OK.

0:28:550:28:59

Mark tries to make most of his son George's matches,

0:28:590:29:03

but today he's seen a bit too much action.

0:29:030:29:05

I was watching basketball and some big old bloke landed on me.

0:29:050:29:08

So you were watching, and they've landed on you?

0:29:080:29:11

Yeah, don't laugh already.

0:29:110:29:12

I'm not laughing, it's serious.

0:29:120:29:14

To add insult to injury, his son was partly to blame.

0:29:140:29:17

'The supporters' bench is pretty close to a wall.'

0:29:170:29:20

Basically, me and this guy go chasing after the ball,

0:29:200:29:24

'and I dive for the ball and just miss it, and this guy tries'

0:29:240:29:27

to save the ball from going out of bounds

0:29:270:29:29

and ends up crashing straight into Dad.

0:29:290:29:31

I think Dad just got caught between a bloke and a hard place, I suppose.

0:29:310:29:34

So it's not surprising George is looking a little sheepish.

0:29:340:29:38

Yeah, it's hurting where I think it snapped. I don't know.

0:29:380:29:42

Right, we need to try and get...

0:29:420:29:45

In that hand?

0:29:450:29:47

Yeah, just a little bit, not bad. I just feel a bit sick.

0:29:470:29:49

-Do you have any medical problems at all?

-No.

0:29:490:29:53

Every movement is agony but Danny needs to take a closer look.

0:29:530:29:57

-I don't really want to bend it.

-I know you don't.

0:29:570:29:59

We're not going to get you to move it,

0:29:590:30:01

we're just going to try and get your jacket.

0:30:010:30:04

Mark can feel his collarbone moving freely, and it hurts.

0:30:040:30:07

-I can't really do much to help.

-Clicking around.

0:30:090:30:12

Oliver holds the top of Mark's arm steady

0:30:130:30:16

to stop the bone moving around. The pain is too much.

0:30:160:30:20

Mark's happy to sacrifice his jumper.

0:30:200:30:23

-You can cut it off, I don't mind.

-You sure?

-Yeah, it's an old jumper!

0:30:230:30:27

The shirt I've had for ages.

0:30:270:30:28

If it's not broken I'm in trouble now.

0:30:280:30:30

Yeah! All this for nothing.

0:30:300:30:32

But there's little doubt that Mark's diagnosed himself correctly.

0:30:340:30:38

-And that's where the pain is, across there?

-Yeah.

0:30:380:30:40

'When we were sitting in the reception room'

0:30:400:30:42

he was obviously hurt, but he was doing his usual jokey way, trying to make light of it.

0:30:420:30:47

If you had to score that pain out of 10, 10 being the worst pain...

0:30:470:30:52

Seven and a half.

0:30:520:30:53

'You could tell he wasn't himself.'

0:30:530:30:55

He was getting a bit green in the face

0:30:550:30:57

and concentrating on the pain quite a lot, as well.

0:30:570:31:00

-Have you ever had morphine before?

-No.

-Never? OK.

0:31:000:31:04

They'll put his arm in a sling and then do some more checks.

0:31:040:31:07

-How was the game going, any good?

-Oh, don't talk about it.

0:31:100:31:13

-Is this the guy that fell on you?

-No, that's my son.

0:31:130:31:16

Well, I hope it wasn't! Was it you?

0:31:160:31:19

George is keeping shtum!

0:31:200:31:21

Clearly not the right time to tell his dad exactly what happened.

0:31:210:31:26

All right, is it?

0:31:280:31:29

Yeah, it's fine. A little bit up, all the excitement.

0:31:290:31:34

But that's all right, that means we can give you some painkillers.

0:31:340:31:38

The family can't quite believe he's broken his collarbone watching, not playing.

0:31:380:31:44

There's going to be a sharp scratch in your arm. Just relax it, OK?

0:31:440:31:48

I think because you're in so much pain we'll give you some morphine

0:31:490:31:53

just to ease that off, then we'll pop you on our chair.

0:31:530:31:56

Do you feel light-headed now?

0:31:580:32:01

-Not yet.

-Not yet?! Are you expecting to, then?

0:32:010:32:05

Just relax that arm, try and relax a bit if you can.

0:32:050:32:07

I know it's easy for me to say.

0:32:070:32:09

Now Mark has been given some intravenous pain relief,

0:32:090:32:11

he's ready for the trip to hospital.

0:32:110:32:14

It turns out that Mark's self-diagnosis was spot-on.

0:32:160:32:20

'He snapped it clean in half. He got offered surgery'

0:32:200:32:23

but turned it down. He thought, how often does he need to...?

0:32:230:32:27

He's not a manual labourer, he doesn't need to carry stuff much,

0:32:270:32:30

so he said as long as he can drive

0:32:300:32:32

and it doesn't affect his golf swing, was the questions he asked the surgeon,

0:32:320:32:36

and they said it should be fine, so he was pretty happy with that.

0:32:360:32:39

And, with the help of a sling, time has healed his collarbone.

0:32:410:32:44

Perhaps he sits on the second row now!

0:32:440:32:46

Earlier in the programme, we saw how a grass fire threatened

0:32:460:32:50

to set the surrounding countryside alight.

0:32:500:32:52

Long, dry spells of hot weather can often lead to fires

0:32:520:32:55

breaking out across the UK.

0:32:550:32:57

Swinley Forest in Berkshire was the site of one of the worst fires since World War II.

0:32:570:33:02

It took more than 300 firefighters from 12 forces

0:33:020:33:06

to get it under control.

0:33:060:33:08

Crews battled for nine days.

0:33:080:33:11

Now, Olaf Baars, Deputy Chief Fire Officer,

0:33:110:33:13

was one of the people behind that operation.

0:33:130:33:15

I suppose when you're fighting a forest fire,

0:33:150:33:17

as opposed to a street, the problem is access to water.

0:33:170:33:20

-You have fire hydrants in streets but not in forests.

-Absolutely.

0:33:200:33:23

There are a couple of fire hydrants in Swinley Forest,

0:33:230:33:26

but they're very low pressure, and that's unusual for a forest.

0:33:260:33:29

In the end, we had to take water from much further afield.

0:33:290:33:32

How far? And how do you get it there?

0:33:320:33:33

Do you literally attach hoses, one to the next, to the next?

0:33:330:33:36

Yes, but with intermediate pumps.

0:33:360:33:38

We use national assets, so high-volume pumps that we set

0:33:380:33:41

into the lakes at the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst

0:33:410:33:45

and ran these high-volume hoses over six and a half kilometres to the scene of the incident.

0:33:450:33:49

-So how much hose did you use?

-All told, through the incident,

0:33:490:33:53

-we ran out 20 miles of high-volume pumping hose.

-Unbelievable.

0:33:530:33:56

Interestingly, with the pictures we were just seeing,

0:33:560:34:00

when you get a fire on the surface that's not the end of it, is it?

0:34:000:34:03

Oddly with a forest it burns underground, too.

0:34:030:34:05

Absolutely. The forest is growing in peat and leaf litter,

0:34:050:34:08

and that contains a lot of fuel, so the fire burns into the peat

0:34:080:34:12

-and can emerge days later somewhere else.

-Extraordinary.

0:34:120:34:15

Also an interesting area for animals.

0:34:150:34:17

They do say that if you burn a forest it's actually good for the forest long-term.

0:34:170:34:21

Why isn't that the case in the area you were working in?

0:34:210:34:24

In the case of Swinley Forest, this is commercial forestry,

0:34:240:34:26

trees being grown for profit, and it's surrounded

0:34:260:34:29

and criss-crossed by the built environment.

0:34:290:34:31

There are towns to the north, to the south-east,

0:34:310:34:33

and other large public buildings that actually come up to the forest,

0:34:330:34:38

so in this case we had to put the fire out.

0:34:380:34:40

Did your firemen see a lot of animal life around the forest?

0:34:400:34:43

Absolutely, and there were snakes trying to escape

0:34:430:34:46

-or get back in all the time, actually.

-Really?

-Yes.

0:34:460:34:49

-How many snakes were there? Or were your firemen not very good

-adders?

0:34:490:34:53

HE LAUGHS

0:34:530:34:55

I have no idea how many snakes there were!

0:34:550:34:57

I've been planning that all day, to be honest with you.

0:34:570:35:01

It's amazing that we seem to get a bit of sunny weather and we're in trouble with our forests.

0:35:010:35:06

No, April was particularly dry.

0:35:060:35:08

It was less than 50% of the normal rainfall,

0:35:080:35:10

and the hottest April for 100 years.

0:35:100:35:13

It's been a dry year thus far,

0:35:130:35:15

and without sustained rain we could still be in trouble.

0:35:150:35:18

-How do these fires start?

-It's difficult to say.

0:35:180:35:21

There are some fires started deliberately, some are accidental.

0:35:210:35:24

-Who starts a fire deliberately?

-That's not for me to determine.

0:35:240:35:28

But there have been arrests in connection with fires in the Swinley Forest area.

0:35:280:35:32

Seriously, don't mess about with fires in this kind of weather,

0:35:320:35:35

because this puts your firemen at risk, doesn't it?

0:35:350:35:38

You're endangering their lives.

0:35:380:35:40

Not only firefighters. Remember Swinley Forest is a large area for recreation,

0:35:400:35:44

and throughout the firefighting operation we had in Swinley Forest,

0:35:440:35:48

we had to keep on getting people to leave the forest area

0:35:480:35:51

who were coming to use the forest for recreation and just to see what was going on.

0:35:510:35:55

All right. Thank you very much, Olaf. Louise?

0:35:550:35:58

Let's take you back now to the Lake District and injured hiker Lyndzey.

0:35:580:36:01

She's freezing cold, in pain and unable to move.

0:36:010:36:04

Mountain Rescue have carried all their kit 1,000 feet up to help her.

0:36:040:36:08

Now they have to get her back the quickest possible way, and that is straight down.

0:36:080:36:14

I'll hold this end. It's just sticking on there.

0:36:160:36:20

If you just get that top bit tight for a start.

0:36:200:36:22

The Mountain Rescue team have decided

0:36:220:36:24

that the quickest, most comfortable way down the mountain

0:36:240:36:27

won't be by the path they all came up.

0:36:270:36:29

'Going down the side of the hillside,'

0:36:290:36:31

it's a lot steeper than coming down the path.

0:36:310:36:36

And because I made the decision that we were going to slide down,

0:36:360:36:40

it means we need to be in control of the stretcher at all times.

0:36:400:36:43

OK. Ready to move?

0:36:430:36:45

Gas and air is keeping the pain at bay

0:36:470:36:50

while Lyndzey is secured on the stretcher.

0:36:500:36:53

She's wrapped in a fleece sleeping bag to keep her warm.

0:36:530:36:57

-Down on this side, Steve.

-Bye, Lyndzey.

0:36:570:36:58

-Bye. Thank you.

-That's all right.

0:36:580:37:01

We'll be sledging a bit with the rope.

0:37:010:37:04

That means it's going to be sliding on the ground. OK?

0:37:040:37:07

It might get a little bit rough, OK?

0:37:070:37:09

It may get a little rough. It's going to be noisy.

0:37:090:37:11

Don't worry about the noise, OK?

0:37:110:37:13

But obviously if it feels painful, just shout out, OK?

0:37:130:37:17

Because we can make it more comfortable. All right.

0:37:170:37:20

-Hard as nails!

-Yeah! Hard as nails from Barrow.

0:37:210:37:24

We tie a 100 metre length of static rope

0:37:240:37:30

onto the back of the stretcher and we'll belay that,

0:37:300:37:33

that is put a device on there so we can control the spin

0:37:330:37:38

in the rope as it descends the mountain.

0:37:380:37:42

Lyndzey is completely in her rescuers' hands.

0:37:420:37:45

I was scared that someone might let go because it was really steep.

0:37:480:37:52

So I thought, "What if one of them loses their footing or I'm heavy?"

0:37:520:37:57

That sounds stupid but I thought, "What if I'm too heavy for them and they let go?"

0:37:570:38:01

I thought I was just going to go sliding down.

0:38:010:38:04

'Everybody on the team is from a climbing background

0:38:040:38:07

'and it's a fairly basic climbing skill.'

0:38:070:38:11

It's not hard. Once you've set the belay

0:38:110:38:13

it will take one person to monitor that rope.

0:38:130:38:16

In a split second, they can put weight on the right angle on the device

0:38:160:38:20

and everything locks up and the stretcher will be completely static on the hillside.

0:38:200:38:25

The stone walls are a particular feature of this landscape.

0:38:250:38:29

There's only one way to get to the other side.

0:38:290:38:32

Whoa. Come on, guys. Keep it steady.

0:38:330:38:36

Where the ground is just too rough to sledge Lyndzey down,

0:38:410:38:45

there's no alternative but to carry her. It's a real team effort.

0:38:450:38:49

'She was being incredibly brave. She was obviously in a lot of pain'

0:39:010:39:08

but she was quite keen to tell us that she was a Barrow girl

0:39:080:39:11

and was made of tough stuff and she could handle it.

0:39:110:39:14

The last part of the journey is less steep and they're able

0:39:180:39:22

to attach a single wheel under the stretcher

0:39:220:39:24

to make things more comfortable for Lyndzey.

0:39:240:39:27

After one, lift. Three, two, one, lift.

0:39:270:39:30

'It takes a lot of weight off from the people carrying the stretcher'

0:39:330:39:37

and it means that we can actually move a little bit faster.

0:39:370:39:42

Throughout the journey, Mike constantly updates the control room

0:39:440:39:47

so that all the emergency services are coordinated.

0:39:470:39:50

When Lyndzey reached hospital, she was found to have not one

0:40:030:40:07

but two fractures in her ankle.

0:40:070:40:09

The pain would have been excruciating.

0:40:090:40:11

She was in a cast and on crutches for six weeks.

0:40:110:40:14

However, thanks to her rescuers,

0:40:140:40:17

her memories of that day are not all bad.

0:40:170:40:20

'From the minute they were there until the minute I left,'

0:40:200:40:23

they tried to make me feel as good as I can in this situation.

0:40:230:40:28

They really explained everything that was going on,

0:40:280:40:31

so minimising my worries, really.

0:40:310:40:34

I love them all.

0:40:370:40:38

Oh, she loves you all! How did you feel about that?

0:40:410:40:44

-How did she cope on that rescue?

-She was fantastic.

0:40:440:40:47

She was really, really good-humoured throughout.

0:40:470:40:49

-Yeah, yeah, real star.

-Excellent.

0:40:490:40:51

Are they always good-humoured like Lyndzey when you meet people in those situations?

0:40:510:40:55

We try to make it that way. Definitely try to make it that way.

0:40:550:40:58

It really helps. You brought some kit here. We saw this used earlier, this tent.

0:40:580:41:03

So what, you just throw it over yourselves, literally?

0:41:030:41:06

Yeah, it's a tent sack and once we're with the casualty,

0:41:060:41:09

pull this over the top of the casualty and as many team members

0:41:090:41:12

as we can get under and very quickly you get a good temperature inside.

0:41:120:41:15

-So good that actually your sweat was dripping onto her.

-Yeah, 'fraid so!

0:41:150:41:20

-But that does help with hypothermia.

-Absolutely. Yeah.

0:41:200:41:23

Talk about the stretcher as well.

0:41:230:41:25

-This is quite a snazzy piece of kit you've got.

-Yeah.

0:41:250:41:28

It's a Mark 6 MacInnes stretcher.

0:41:280:41:30

It's a jack-of-all-trades stretcher for us.

0:41:300:41:33

It goes down the side of a cliff,

0:41:330:41:35

down the side of a hillside or winched up in the helicopter.

0:41:350:41:38

And pretty undamageable, is it?

0:41:380:41:41

It's had a bit of stick, this one. It's ten years old now.

0:41:410:41:44

How many people has it rescued?

0:41:440:41:46

It'll have had about 400-500 people on board.

0:41:460:41:49

Incredible. Do you enjoy this job?

0:41:490:41:52

You seem to. You have a great sense of humour, you guys.

0:41:520:41:54

We wouldn't do it unless we enjoyed it.

0:41:540:41:57

We get nothing but pleasure out of it, really.

0:41:570:41:59

Yeah, it's what it's all about.

0:41:590:42:02

And we saw you going up that very steep hill and going down the steep hill.

0:42:020:42:06

You were the person who makes all the decisions?

0:42:060:42:08

The team makes its own decisions. I just guide it on its way.

0:42:080:42:12

A quick question. Did you say you get into the tent

0:42:120:42:15

to create heat to keep people warm?

0:42:150:42:17

Yeah. It's a big box affair, so one person stands in the four corners

0:42:170:42:22

-and acts as a tent pole.

-That's brilliant.

-Very clever.

0:42:220:42:25

Would you fancy being carried down a mountain on one of these?

0:42:250:42:28

-By these two? Definitely!

-You and half the ladies watching!

0:42:280:42:32

And my friend Dmitri, I think!

0:42:320:42:34

We've run out of time unfortunately. We have so much more to talk about.

0:42:340:42:37

-We'll see you next time for more Real Rescues.

-Bye.

0:42:370:42:40

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0:42:500:42:53

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