Skip to main content

Emergency services take training to new heights

4 October 2013

A dramatic staged rescue will take place at the Beverley Minster on Friday 11 October at 10.30am.

Members of the public are invited to attend the exercise, led by Humberside Fire and Rescue Service that will be conducted in the roof space of the Minster where a casualty will be rescued by emergency crews in a complex ‘rescue-from-heights’ operation.

Liam Plunkett from Humberside Fire and Rescue said: “Exercises like this gives crews a realistic environment to practise the skills and techniques required to conduct a rescue from heights. It also provides an opportunity to demonstrate to the public the other capabilities we have outside of firefighting.”

Specialist teams from Humberside Fire and Rescue Service, Humberside Police and the Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) from Yorkshire Ambulance Service will take part, with a step by step presentation taking members of the public through the different stages of the rescue.

Beverley Minster hold organised public roof tours inside the roof of the building. This exercise will provide the Minster with an opportunity to practise its own emergency plans should an incident of this nature occur.

Neil Pickford, assistant virger at Beverley Minster, said: “More than 3,000 people climb the 20 metres (70 feet) to the central tower every year on one of our famous roof tours. It’s very reassuring to know that, should there ever be an accident, the emergency services are trained to treat and rescue the casualty quickly, effectively and safely.”

HART is a group of specially-trained personnel who are equipped to safely locate, stabilise, treat and rescue casualties from dangerous environments such as collapsed buildings. They can provide emergency treatment in precarious rescue operations where patients may be trapped or in places where access is difficult, such as heights, underground or in water.

Andy Croxall, a Clinical Supervisor with HART, said: “Our HART clinicians will be going into the ceiling void at Beverley Minster to treat a ‘patient’. We have received extensive training in how to work safely at height and we have attended real-life incidents where our knowledge and expertise has been put into practice. However, these types of incidents are uncommon so we welcome the opportunity to enhance our training by working in partnership with Humberside Fire and Rescue Service on this exercise.”