Search and Rescue team rescue stranded family

The relentless soggy weather presented the Border Search and Rescue Unit with an interesting set of challenges last weekend.
The relentless soggy weather presented the Border Search and Rescue Unit with an interesting set of challenges last weekend.

thankfully the weather that caused problems right across Berwickshire and north Northumberland a few weeks ago has subsided, but stories and pictures are still coming into us from those affected by the heavy rainfall.

The relentless soggy weather presented the Border Search and Rescue Unit with an interesting set of challenges over the weekend ending Monday, July 9.

Summer is always a fairly busy time for the team, who provide emergency first aid cover to a number of Common Ridings and sporting events.

Saturday, July 7 saw them in the Lammermuirs and the Jedburgh area supporting the Duns and Reidswire Rideouts. The saturated state of the countryside has made this year’s events unusually tricky both for the riders and for anyone trying to take vehicles off-road.

This was brought home when the team was diverted to assist a family who had become stranded with their vehicle at a picnic site on the banks of the Whiteadder, immediately below the reservoir to the north of Cranshaws. Quickly-rising water had inundated the site, where the family had spent the night camping, only to find themselves on an island surrounded by a thigh-deep moat when they awoke.

The team was able to tow the vehicle and the family to the safety and (relative) dryness of higher ground. The remainder of the day passed without incident, as did the Reidswire rideout the same day which saw the team once again on standby with vehicles and qualified first-aiders on-hand to treat any fallers.

The vehicles had scarcely cooled by the time we were called out for something potentially much more serious on Monday July 9

A 50-year-old woman walking alone on the Pennine Way had contacted her husband by text message to alert him that she was struggling with the unexpectedly boggy conditions.

The sodden ground meant that even the specially-equipped Landrovers couldn’t tackle the steeper ground, and the 14 BSARU volunteers who had answered the call had a good stiff hike in to reach the search area. In the event, the hiker was located, unharmed but bedraggled, by the Northumberland team.