Nick Knowles and Louise Minchin follow the work of the emergency services. Skateboarders film themselves rescuing a family trapped in a blazing flat.
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Today on Real Rescues, the skateboarders who became heroes.
-We can't get out.
-I can't get out the stairs.
I can't breathe. There's too much smoke.
-We've got you.
-It's all right. Nice and slowly.
What happens when a valuable farm animal gets into trouble?
We meet the rural rescue team who come to their aid.
Hello. We are at the South Western Ambulance control room.
The team here are on call all day every day to answer 999 emergencies.
They take over 1,000 calls a day.
They're really busy. We won't disturb them when they're on an emergency call.
When two skateboarders headed out with a video camera hoping to get some great action shots,
they ended up with a dramatic film, but not to do with skateboarding.
It starred them rescuing a family from a burning house.
Is anybody in there?
'Leaving the camera on a car bonnet, they rush towards the building.
'Smoke is pouring out of an upstairs flat.
'Their thoughts immediately turn to anyone trapped in there.'
I thought, "Well, this ain't burnt toast or anything.
"I've got to get on to the phone. There's someone in danger here."
By the time he'd got on to the fire crew,
the window had gone and it was billowing out.
'Spencer, wearing the striped jacket,
'alerts the neighbours downstairs.
'They've been told everyone is out, so Dave passes on the information.'
'The fire is rapidly escalating but no-one knows what's going on inside.
'There's a family in the flat on the left -
'a mother, Tracey, and her two boys.
'Her neighbours, fleeing their flat, yell to call 999.
'She makes the call, unaware that smoke is filling the hallway.'
As I opened the door, my smoke alarm kicked in.
There was a lot of smoke in the communal hallway.
He just screamed at me to phone 999.
I shut my front door,
screamed at my children to get some shoes and a coat on.
I then dialled 999.
'But the fire is waiting for no-one.
'Thick toxic smoke is at Tracey's door, blocking her escape route.'
I got a duvet to put over the children's heads
to stop smoke getting into their lungs.
I tried to open the front door.
A blast of heat and smoke knocked me off my feet.
I slammed it shut and realised there was no way I'd get out the front door.
'Tracey is terrified.
'Even now, the skateboarders are unaware she's trapped.'
'It's really engulfed now, and the next thing'
we hear the lady from next door screaming.
-We can't get out.
-I can't get down the stairs.
I can't breathe. There's too much smoke!
'The video shows Spencer's instinctive reaction.
'He goes upstairs, desperately trying to find her door.'
As soon as I got to the level of the top floor, my head ran into smoke.
I couldn't see. I took a breath of air and dropped down.
There was a pocket of air. I shouted, "Where are you?"
I couldn't find the door. I knew if I stayed, that would be me laying there.
'The smoke forced Spencer back.
'He stops anyone with thoughts of trying.'
TRACEY: 'I did start to panic, but when the kids are there,'
you just think, "I want them out."
I just said to keep calm, get as far away from the smoke as possible,
and we'll get your children out.
'They can't get in via the stairs. They have to think of another rescue plan and work quickly.
'The fire is getting more ferocious by the minute.'
That situation gets even more dramatic. We'll have more later.
We saw how Spencer couldn't breathe or see anything.
These goggles replicate those conditions to train firefighters.
Steve, you are a former firefighter. Now you train fire safety.
-What are these for?
-To train firefighters
in the early stages, to get them past that fear
of being obscured and in darkness.
You at home will be able to see what it looks like.
We've got them on Dan's camera. We prepared it earlier. You'll see what I can see.
-Your vision should be quite good at the moment.
You're going to change it?
-I'll do that now.
-Goodness me! That's really scary.
It should now be quite obscure.
I can see two lights on the cameras.
-Nick, where are you?
-I'm in this corner.
-I can hear people around me.
I can't see my feet or my hands. Where are you, Nick?
-That's how close you were!
-I can't see you.
I can't even see your shadow.
-It can't really be that lack of vision?
-Unfortunately, it can.
Depending on what's burning, the visibility can be zero.
I could see lights, but does it get worse than that?
You say to practise getting out of your house. I couldn't see my feet.
-It can be that bad or worse?
-It can, unfortunately.
We tell people to get as low as possible, below the smoke layer.
This is truly life-saving. I had no idea how to find Nick, but you have special ways of finding people.
Yes. Firefighters have techniques for searching a room and being safe.
You've got a story about a little girl who was hiding. How did you find her?
We had a house fire with two persons reported, a boy and a girl.
Mother outside screaming, very distressed.
We quickly located the boy in the bedroom.
We did an extensive search, couldn't find the little girl.
Eventually, she was located hiding under the kitchen sink.
-You would never be able to see or even perhaps hear her.
-I hope I never have to do that.
-Nick, I had no idea at all.
This morning, we were joking that Louise always checks in a hotel the map of how to get out.
Now that I've seen that, I think I will.
I'm going to talk to Nick McGuinness over in the corner here, I hope.
The other thing that's made me think - smoke alarms!
Please check you've got one and make sure the battery's working.
I took mine off cos I was cooking sausages and I just realised I forgot to put it back.
-Now, I'm going to talk to Nick, if he's not on a call...?
I'm fascinated by the detective work these guys use.
-You got a call from a girl that was at a party?
-That's right. She woke up in a car.
Morning after the night before. No idea where she was.
We exhausted our normal measures for finding where someone is.
Tracing her mobile, but she wasn't where it might be registered...
She couldn't tell you where she was because of the things she'd indulged in confused her.
-And she was ill.
-She wasn't in a position to give us the information.
We ended up getting her e-mail address and password,
logging in to her Facebook account and finding out where the party was.
-From the conversation?
-Whose idea was that?
-One of our call takers.
We got the location and got her to hospital.
-Social networking is beyond me but these guys know about that too. Thanks very much.
Cases involving sick children are upsetting for all emergency crews.
They're trained, but even the most experienced paramedic
would find it tough if the call-out is to a member of their own family.
'Paramedic Cathy Baker is driving under blue lights to a school.
'She's done it many times before, but this time it's very different.
'Cathy's racing to help her own nine-year-old nephew.'
It does increase the heart rate, which is normal for any job,
but even more so when it's a member of the family.
I want to know is he OK and talking when I get there?
Which entrance do we need to come to? ..Clarendon Road.
That's fine. OK.
We're at Highcliff, so we'll see you in a few minutes.
'Cathy and her colleague Steve are told James has had a seizure.
'Cathy knows it's his second in a few days.
'They find James being looked after by his mother, Cathy's sister Sharon, as well as the school nurse.
'He got a funny taste in his mouth, his speech started to slur and his legs went wobbly.
'Knowing something was very wrong, his teacher quickly got him outside.
'At least James has now recovered enough to walk to the ambulance.
'His mum Sharon was out shopping when the school called.'
It was the school to say that he'd had another episode.
Could I come as quickly as possible? For a second, I was just stood there, frozen.
'It was a great comfort to Sharon that her sister was in the nearest ambulance and on her way.'
The relief when somebody who knows what they're talking about comes through that door.
It takes the pressure off you.
-Do you still feel a bit wobbly?
-Got that funny taste...?
'The sisters are both very worried because it's happened before.'
'James had a funny turn on the Tuesday. He was ashen.'
His lips started to turn blue, his face went to one side, he was dribbling and couldn't talk.
'I thought he was choking and was shouting had he eaten anything?'
He kept shaking his head. Eventually, he came out of that.
'Cathy knows that her nephew will have to endure many tests.
'They start them in the ambulance.
'The first is to check his blood sugar levels.'
Little sharp scratch. Ow!
It's all done. Good lad.
Amazed by it now, aren't you?
'Cathy's thoughts are that James might be suffering from epilepsy.'
The things we're concerned about this episode
are epilepsy, but also cardiac arrhythmias we'd be worried about.
Or a fainting episode, which is the simplest answer.
We're hoping that it's mainly that.
But the cardiac arrhythmia can develop later on
and people are known to die from sudden adult death syndrome,
or sudden child, for no reason, and find out it's cardiac arrhythmia.
Shall I put some stickies on you, see what your heart's doing?
This is going to feel a bit cold when these bits go on you.
They've got a little bit of gel on there.
So it might be a little bit cold.
If you get a funny taste, let me know.
'James described a funny taste in his mouth and tingling in his nose
'on both occasions.'
That would ring alarm bells that it could be an "aura",
which sometimes epileptic people have as a pre-warning that they're going to have a seizure.
'Cathy gets James to tell her as much as possible.'
When it happened, did you have any pains in your head?
Well, I was feeling quite warm. I just felt really weird.
Really hot and I felt a bit shaky.
-You didn't have any pain anywhere?
'They're at A&E. James will see a doctor and, hopefully,
'find out what's causing these mysterious seizures.'
We'll come back to James, to see if the medical detectives can get to the bottom of his fainting.
Still to come on Real Rescues,
'the car that bounced off seven vehicles at 70 miles an hour.
'Looking at it, it's a wonder anyone got out alive.'
Try and keep your head still, mate.
And Annette's having a routine day
'until she looks out the window and sees her car in flames.'
I pulled the car into the drive. There was no warning. Nothing.
Earlier, we watched Spencer and Dave trying to rescue a family from their burning flat.
Flames are pouring out the window, the family's trapped. There's no time. They have to find a way out.
'As the fire rages,
'only a door separates Tracey and her two boys from the flames.
'She's doing all she can to keep them all safe.'
I went into my living room, the furthest point I could get from the front door,
shutting all the fire doors.
I grabbed some towels and shoved them under the door
to stop the smoke because both my children were coughing badly.
'Spencer and Dave are joined by a third man, who suggests another way of getting the family out.'
-Drop the kids out the window.
-Yeah. Drop the children out to us!
'The first window doesn't open fully.'
The side window's bigger!
TRACEY: 'I knew I could lower the children down by their arms.'
I could get them as low as possible before I let go.
'Tracey's boys are aged three and 11, and it's a long drop.
'It's going to take a bit of nerve, but they have no choice.'
It's all right.
-We've got you.
'I could see his little legs.'
I thought it's such a little child, but they dropped him down and we put our arms up.
'I just grabbed hold of whatever I could. I grabbed his foot.
'Then grabbed his body and put him to the floor as safely as I could.'
Come on, mate. You can do it, no problem. Hang by your hands.
'Adam's safe. Now it's Robert's turn.'
'He was older, but very hesitant.'
He knew the dangers.
'It was a very high window, so I encouraged him,
'reassured him that we're going to grab him.'
You won't even know that you've dropped. Go on!
Let go, mate. Let go. Let go.
All right. And you?
'They think it's just Tracey to go.
'As they try to persuade her to jump suddenly something else appears.'
The cats! They were lethal. All the claws coming out!
'I'm an animal lover. I've got three cats of my own.'
All part of the family. They've all got to come down safely.
'Tracey can't put off her own escape any longer.'
They were shouting, "Now you! Now you!"
I was a bit reluctant, but I thought I hadn't got a choice.
I climbed onto the window sill and then I heard the heavenly noise
of the fire engine turning into the road!
I climbed back down off the window sill and said, "I'll wait."
'The firefighters set about tackling the fire.
'Two of them helped Tracy down one of their ladders.
'Station commander Geoff Quince was impressed by the rescuers.'
The skateboarders and neighbours that helped the children and cats
did a sterling job!
They didn't endanger themselves but took really good actions,
which saved us an awful lot of time.
It made the scene a lot safer
and enabled us to focus on the firefighting.
'Tracey can't believe the lengths Spencer and Dave went to to get her children out.'
'The boys that came over and helped'
and another passer-by, did decide to try and do something.
'They could have saved my children's lives.'
'We dealt with the situation as best we could.'
Then we went off and had a skate.
SPENCER: We had a thank-you from the father. He came away from work.
We were still at the skatepark.
'He was happy and said thank you for what we'd done for the children.'
And the cats. Don't forget the cats.
Spencer and Dave have joined us for a chat off the back of that.
-You're famous now, aren't you?
-Seem to be. A little bit!
-You bunged that on YouTube. How many hits?
-7,500 hits now.
Why did you film it? Not everybody walks around with a camera.
-Then to have the presence of mind to stick it on a bonnet and leave it running.
-Always got a camera with us.
-Is that right?
-Saw the fire and got the camera out.
-Do you record everything?
Don't answer that! Realised what a dodgy question that was.
What did the guys say at the scene? The fire brigade come piling in.
They saw what the scenario was, what was going on.
As soon as they realised that people were out the building,
apart from the lady, they made sure we were safe then got on with what they had to do.
-You wandered back to the skatepark?
-Yeah. We did.
Let me go back over that. You've got kids.
I've got four.
With this little one dangling over your head, what are you thinking?
I would hope that someone would do the same for my child.
That child doesn't know what's going on. He's got no fear.
And it was up to us as citizens to make sure he's safe and gets out.
-It wasn't just the children.
-The dangerous catch was this one.
The white cat, followed by a black cat as well.
Yeah, that was a bit of an ordeal.
It was having these claws clamp on to you, out of nowhere.
-Tore me to pieces.
I did have a couple of claw marks, if I remember rightly.
When the dad found out, he came to find you, didn't he?
He did. He came and found us. He was really grateful for what we'd done.
He was so happy he actually bunged us a drink.
So we went home and had a drink. It turned out to be a good day.
Good work! Listen, guys, do you ever wear a hoodie?
-Once in a blue moon, I do wear a hoodie.
Don't judge people just cos they wear hoodies! Thanks very much.
Now, if you've got any footage of a rescue, why not let us know? Louise.
Annette popped out with the kids, came back home, parked on the drive then started to cook dinner.
A normal day, until one of her children looked outside
to find a real emergency unfolding on the driveway.
'The firefighters are moving swiftly through the traffic.
'It's been reported a car fire is next to houses and other cars.
'An entire street could be in danger of going up.'
'Car fires. They're full of plastics.'
It will become a really intense fire.
'Also, next to a house, the heat and the smoke is going to impinge.
'What would have been a small fire becomes a very large fire.
'The smoke's full of poisonous fumes.'
A few lungfuls make you very ill.
I'd say it's there!
-Just outside the house!
-In attendance. Car well alight.
'They arrived to find the front of the car engulfed in flames.
'The fire's spread to the fence. The Land Rover is next in line.
'Kitted-up in breathing apparatus to cope with the toxic fumes,
'Liam Barry and Ben Carter aim a hose to stop the spread.
'The family have been told to keep inside
'until the fire is out and the smoke is cleared.
'The flames are knocked back but poisonous smoke is billowing out.'
There are people in the house. I told them to stay in.
The fumes are obviously quite dangerous.
'They get the bonnet up and damp down the engine.'
There's still smoke. It's not just steam.
They're going to make sure it's out. A lot of heat built up in there.
The roof lining's come down. The dashboard's melted.
'While they work, the crew look for signs of how the fire got going.'
Has it recently been used? There's a child's car seat in there.
They've just come back and there's a fault with it.
Need an open mind. Start investigating in a minute.
'The firefighters have worked quickly and efficiently.
'All the time, the family have been kept safe behind closed doors.'
That close to the house, that could have been quite nasty.
'Now the smoke and steam have dwindled to a safe level,
'Adrian goes indoors to speak to the owner, Annette.'
-Is everybody OK?
'She's stunned by what's happened.'
I'd been out. I came home, pulled onto the drive, put the dinner on.
Nothing unusual at all.
My foster daughter looked out the window and said the car's on fire.
I looked out the window. There was no warning. There was nothing!
I'm sorry. I'm a bit shaky about it. There was no warning, nothing.
'Annette is a foster mum and often has young children in the car.'
What warning would there have been if I'd been driving? What if I'd had a baby in the back...?
-That's what makes it shocking.
'It's upsetting looking at the burnt-out wreck.
'Adrian reassures her it's unlikely to have happened on the road.'
If you'd been driving, you would have had some indication.
The engine would have spluttered or you'd have smelled it.
It's very rare, when you're driving along, does a car just suddenly go.
It might have been something when you pulled up
and went in, that you weren't aware of cos it was only just starting.
Thank goodness you're OK. That's the main thing.
'Thanks to the firefighters' swift action,
'there's relatively little harm done to the property.'
This fence is...will need replacing.
The next-door neighbour's car is fine. My friend's car is fine.
There's damage here.
The window's going to need replacing.
When I think what could have happened, it's amazing.
Gary, you're a road safety officer. Annette wasn't even in her car!
-That can happen quite easily?
-Yes it can.
When a car's parked, heat will build up, but there's always a fault.
-This sort of thing?
-Yeah. You're surrounded by wires.
These get pinched, and you've got fuel lines and all sorts of stuff.
With this age of car, although it's partly electronic,
-we'd disconnect the battery to stop that side of the fire.
-Everything stops at that point.
-And we treat it as a normal fire.
-Fuel is obviously a problem.
-You have a "running fuel" fire?
Perhaps you've hit something in the road. It's ruptured your fuel tank.
Fuel starts pouring out, or you've parked on a hill and it runs away.
That's a running fuel fire. It's pouring down the road.
You can see how that's incredibly dangerous.
You've got a different car here, a much more modern car.
It can cause problems, can't it?
What we do now is work within the electrical system of the car.
Why would we cut this roof off when, with the press of one button,
we can get to the people inside?
So we had to change the way we deal with car fires and RTCs
as cars have evolved.
We now use the systems of the car to help us, not to hinder us.
My car is not as sophisticated as this, but a lot of it is electric.
I'm worried that I could get locked in. Could that happen?
Well, no, but you've got to remember to do what you normally do.
What people do if they smell smoke is pull over and stop.
You've got to do what you normally do. Don't panic.
-With me, I have to take the keys out.
-As with this one.
Most of them have a button you can press to unlock as well, but you've got to remember to do that.
-What about putting your hand brake on?
I have seen incidents where we're chasing a car fire down the road.
The wires had shorted, the electric motor started and they'd left it in gear without the hand brake on.
This is probably stupid, but as soon as I saw smoke from my bonnet,
-I'd go round and open the bonnet.
That's the worst thing you could do.
Firefighters wear the protective clothing.
If you open it up, you get air into it and increase...
-That fire would just...
-You're drawing it towards yourself.
Get out. Get the fire service out and keep out the way.
-The fumes are absolutely lethal.
-You've had an experience of breathing in fumes.
When I was a very young fireman I breathed in some plastic fumes.
-I was in hospital for several weeks.
-Do you remember it happening?
I turned over some plastic bottles that were burning
and ended up in hospital.
So, take the keys out. Make sure the door opens.
-Don't open the bonnet. Do you stand near your car?
-No. Away from it.
And away from the smoke.
Don't stand down the road in the smoke. Go to the other side.
-But please remember to call the fire service.
-It's a lot to remember.
-You've helped me a lot. Gary, thank you.
I've learned something.
I would have opened the bonnet to give them access.
Let's return to nine-year-old James, in A&E after suffering two seizures in a week.
There's one thing on his mind.
'James looks apprehensive as he waits in hospital
'to find out why he had a seizure at school.
'He has a request for his Auntie Cathy.'
I can't promise you that. There may be.
What they may do is they may put some numbing gel on your hand
to do a proper blood test cos that's a tiny one.
'His dad has now arrived at the hospital.'
They may pop some numbing gel on there.
-So I can't feel anything?
'Cathy needs to get back on the road.
'She leaves her nephew in the safe hands of Dr Simon Bell.'
-This is Mum and Dad?
-You look very well, which is good.
What's brought you to see us?
A couple of days ago... Last Tuesday, I got in the car
and I started having a bit of a fit.
He was very ashen, lips going blue, lots of dribbling.
Not like an epileptic fit, it didn't seem like.
-No, but almost like panicking. Not like a...
Then we took him to Bournemouth.
'Throughout that first episode, James was unable to speak, but he could remember everything.'
It happened when I got in the car. My mum opened the door.
-It was like some sort of explosion happening.
-Nothing has ever happened before?
-Fit and well?
What happened today at school, then?
-I was at school. I'm sitting down doing my work, yeah?
When suddenly, I just felt like something came in my mouth, like...
-A funny taste?
-Yeah. Or a funny feeling in my mouth.
It just seemed to be on my tongue.
It was only just on my tongue this time.
I put my hand up to tell the teacher but all I could do was,
"N..." That sort of thing.
-So your speech was a bit funny?
'There's no problem with James's memory.
'He can remember it all well and he's very good at telling the doctor exactly what happens.
'Simon has got all the details so he gets down to a physical check.'
Out, and stop.
Don't let me pull them apart.
-Do you feel me touch you here?
Push into my hand.
OK. That's fine.
All good. Can't find anything wrong, which is always good.
The nurse has taken your temperature, heart rate and sugar.
They're all perfectly normal.
'Although James is responding well in tests, Simon can't tell him what is going on.'
How do you feel about coming into hospital?
-Does that scare you?
-It's not too bad upstairs, is it?
'He'll have to have more tests to get to the root of the problem.'
'We'd worry that something's not quite right with his brain.'
Is this a seizure? Epilepsy?
Or is there something wrong with his heart?
Maybe he had a funny rhythm in his heart.
They're the two organs we're going to concentrate on.
He's perfectly well now, except it's been three days and he's had two episodes.
The safest thing is to get further tests on his brain and on his heart.
We'll get all those, then hopefully come up with a diagnosis and start some treatment.
James is doing fine but doctors are still trying to find out what's going on. Louise.
We've all driven past a wrecked car and shuddered at the thought
of the unfortunate passengers. Well, take a look at this car.
Shunted by a lorry at 70mph
then pin-balled between seven other cars.
It's a wonder anyone survived.
'Ambulance medics John and Steven have been called out after a nasty collision on the A329.'
We're going to a multiple car RTC.
Possibly two people need to be spinal boarded.
One walking wounded.
We've got another ambulance on scene and one of our officers.
So we'll see what we get.
'What they've got is a scene of destruction.
'Seven cars have been involved. By far worst off, a Citroen Saxo.
'The young couple inside are being treated at the edge of the road.
'Paramedic Heather is with the driver, Lucy.'
Between 50 to 70 miles per hour.
The young lady was braking. Rear-end shunted, we believe by the lorry.
Then she hit the car in front and then a couple of others.
'It was hit with such force that it pin-balled into several vehicles,
'spinning over 360 degrees before coming to a standstill.
'Lucy and her boyfriend got out of the car, but shortly afterwards,
'they both started to feel the effects of the violent impact.
'Lucy has pain in her neck. Jay is resting after he collapsed.
'He finds it difficult to get back to his feet.
'Heather is taking no chances and wants the pair to stay still
'before they're put onto spinal boards.'
Most people get out their cars
because they've got an adrenaline rush.
'They don't understand that there may be internal injuries that they won't feel pain for.'
At the speed Lucy says that she was going and the way she was hit, and the car spun,
we have to worry that there might be a spinal injury or head injury.
This collar's going round your neck. It'll be a bit uncomfortable.
Just going to feed it under. Try and keep your head still, mate.
-We'll do everything for you.
-It's a bit uncomfortable. That's the idea.
'The team have to take a "one up, one down" approach with the couple,
'as Lucy will need to undergo the same procedure while standing.'
We're going to have to go slowly...
'Jay's condition is the one the team are most concerned about.'
He had collapsed, by eye witness accounts. We're not entirely sure why he'd collapsed.
That could be due to head injury, the vehicle impacting his hip,
or the fact that he's got some form of concussion.
'Lucy and Jay arrived in one car,
'but will leave in two separate ambulances.
'Jay's worried about his girlfriend. For 20 minutes, he's looked at the sky and can't see if she's OK.
'Heather reassures him about her condition.'
'Now Jay's in the ambulance, Heather can check for internal injuries.'
Just press on your tummy, all right?
No pain there at all?
-A tiny bit there.
-Like a pressure pain?
-I saw you wiggling your legs around, so there's no pain in your legs?
'She checks his recollection of the accident to see if he lost consciousness.'
-What's the next thing you remember?
-She said, "Get out of the car."
The next thing I know, I was fallen over on the grass.
-I tried to stand up.
-Was standing up difficult?
-I was just shaking in the knees.
So the first thing you remember when we arrived,
-well, after the accident, was getting out the car?
Before that, hitting the car in front. Nothing between the two?
'Jay had pre and post amnesia. He couldn't remember the beginning nor what happened afterwards.'
That could be down to concussion.
Where he's had the jolt, the shunt and the spinning, his brain's just shaken inside his head.
'A concussion can last minutes or it can last days.
'It depends on the nature of the shaking.'
'In spite of everything, Jay's found one consolation.'
-Your car's wrecked.
-That's all right. It's not my car!
-Whose car is it?
-She's got another one at home!
'Looking at the car, it's lucky Jay is talking at all, let alone joking.
'He'll be reunited with Lucy in the A&E department
'where doctors will examine them to rule out potentially serious injuries.'
In rural areas, like many covered by South Western Ambulance,
firefighters have to deal with unusual or unique circumstances.
Agricultural buildings, livestock, farming machinery all provide their own challenges for rescuers.
Welcome to Wiltshire Rural Rescue. You can see some of the kit.
We're going to have a chat. Let's start with Tom.
-You're an animal specialist.
There are specific difficulties with animals, aren't there?
I'm going to start with some footage of some cows in the water.
Cinching is how you control animals.
It's a technique of getting a line around an animal,
negating the need for crews to get into the water.
It's a safer way of doing it.
It's directing them without swimming with them.
How did the cows get in there?
I believe a rambler left a gate open and the cows went in.
-And you were able to get them out.
-It's important that you understand the animals.
They can represent a danger to the firefighters, but also you can lose farmers a lot of money.
Yeah. It's two-fold.
Firstly, we don't want them to release animals into a field
where we've got crews performing operational duties.
-You don't want a bull around!
-We don't want large animals.
Secondly, and nearly as importantly from a farmer's point of view,
we don't want to release veal calves, for instance,
into a field where there's lush grass and maybe cause internal digestion problems.
So you have to know your animals. You work with these guys as well.
Talk to us about the work you do. We've got a bit of kit here.
This is the inflatable rescue pathway,
primarily used for creating a stable platform for any operations.
It can be used on any unstable surface,
such as ice, mud, sand, slurry.
We've got footage of you in action with an animal again,
although you don't work specifically with animals.
A sheep stuck on an island.
In that instance, we used the emergency rescue boat.
It's a bit easier to manoeuvre.
They had to locate the sheep before they could perform a rescue.
We can use either the RIB or the pathway.
-And how did the sheep get there?
-It swam across, actually.
Why couldn't it swim back?
It got caught, feet in the water, legs on the island.
We were talking earlier,
that a lot of your job is to stop people undertaking dangerous work
to try and rescue animals.
Yeah. What we advise people to do is not go after them.
-Call the water rescue team out.
-Because you guys are specialists.
-Do you train together regularly?
-Once or twice a month.
We are going out to so many large animal rescues now, we need to keep on top of our skills.
Thanks, chaps. You've caused a stir amongst the women in our office.
They look a lot better out their rubber suits! Are they a bit warm?
-The sun's come out! They're made for being in water.
Over to you, Louise.
I've been told lots of times by the fire service, that you should know the way out of your house.
Not until I put these on did I have any idea how important that was.
I couldn't even see my hand, let alone a door!
Join us next time for more Real Rescues.
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Skateboarders film themselves rescuing a family trapped in a blazing flat, and a car catches fire while parked in the drive.