Fantastic work xxx

Fantastic work 👏👏👏 xxx
The UWFRA contingent of cave rescuers has returned safely after the South Wales cave rescue incident concluded last night. Many are now back at work. With permission, we are reprinting a brief account of theSee More rescue written by one of our members. Well done to every single one of you. “Cavers rescue cavers. It’s quite a straightforward concept, because there simply is nobody else. Emergency service workers don’t go underground, so a team of unpaid volunteers take up the role. We train and practise, to operate equipment and try techniques out. Training is good, but what you learn on a rescue will open your eyes widely. Have you ever seen 70 people kneel down in a stream to create a safe and level platform for a stretcher-bound casualty to pass over? Read on. Caving and cave exploration could be likened to the final frontier; some cave passages have seen less human footsteps than the surface of the moon. Formed by nature many tens of thousands of years ago, caves were hollowed out by water chemically attacking limestone. A common misconception is that caves are small, tight places. True, they certainly can be, but they can also be enormous subterranean voids. Cathedral like is size, jaw-dropping in beauty and as enchanting as a fairy tale. If you injure yourself in a cave, you’re further from rescue than anywhere else on the planet. The ratio we use is 10:1. Roughly one hour of caving time will take ten hours to undo in a rescue scenario. That being considered, it’s no wonder that over 200 cave rescuers from all of the UKs principal caving areas have just spent 54 hours under a Welsh mountain rescuing an injured man from a cave called “OFD” for short. Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Association received a call for assistance at around 4pm on Sunday. A small team consisting of surface and underground personnel travelled to South Wales overnight, arriving between 3am and 5.15am. The underground team was briefed to be ready to deploy at 9.00am. Nobody had slept. How could you in that situation? We knew the injuries involved and the time that had already elapsed since the accident. Local cavers described the nature of the area we were to go to help in. ”It’s a bit tight and thrutchy in places.” That’s caver speak for saying that it will be very difficult indeed! I got my first sight of the ascending stretcher team, some of whom had entered the cave at 3.00am, at about 10.30am. Are you familiar with the term “Pre-hospital care?” It could come in a wide range of scenarios. The most likely that you will see is an ambulance crew attending to a patient beside a road or in their own home. Less likely are you to see caving trauma doctors, wellies and-all, administering intravenous morphine whilst balancing above a fast flowing subterranean stream, with a small headtorch for light, to a patient who has severe injuries. It’s a thing to behold, and for an injured caver below ground, a life saver. Significant time and energies had gone into making the casualty comfortable and safe for transport. Cue the assembly of cave rescuers, whose sole job is to support the medical team and expedite the extraction of the casualty from the cave. So, the plan was simple. We would lay in the stream passage. Backwards, forwards and upside down, in whatever way we needed to allow the injured man to glide gently across us on his way to the surface. Sometimes moving 6 inches at a time, care, compassion and courage were shown by all involved. It’s less than pleasant being upside down in a stream with the water flowing down your neck hole and out of your overall leg, with the weight of an injured man squashing your face into the floor, but that’s what we do. Cavers rescue cavers. 54 hours after the rescue began, the seriously injured man was extracted from Ogof Ffynnon Ddu alive. I’m very proud to be able to have played a small part in this rescue, alongside cavers, friends and rescue colleagues from around the country. Well done to you all, and my very best wishes to the casualty for a speedy recovery. Thanks must also go to the South Wales Caving Club for their hospitality, providing food and provisions for a small army.” Photo is of some, but not all, of the UWFRA members who travelled to the incident.