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Mountain rescue team member saved by 40 colleagues after serious fall

40 colleagues from three different teams were involved in the rescue Photo: Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team

A member of Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team had to be saved by a team of 40 colleagues after falling and suffering serious injuries on Monday evening.

Mountaineer Ed Docwra fell above Blea Water in the Lake District while out with Graham Uney, a member of Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team, who were reportedly both well prepared.

In a post on Facebook, Graham wrote that Ed was leading a pitch when he fell, sustaining major injuries including broken ribs, scapular, and damage to one of his vertebra.

The rescue lasted for several hours, involving 40 mountain rescuers from Patterdale, Penrith, and Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team, the air ambulance and the Coastguard helicopter.

Ed was flown to Newcastle, where he is said to have already started making a quick recovery.

Credit: Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team

The Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team Leader praised those involved with the rescue and asked people not to criticise the two climbers:

Firstly, on behalf of the entire team I want to wish our team member a very speedy recovery from his injuries. I’ve already seen the pictures of him up and about in hospital demonstrating his true spirit. I would also like to pass on our thoughts to his family who are keeping us posted by Facebook and text messages!

I would like to formally thank Penrith MRT for leading and coordinating a difficult rescue. Our thanks also go to the air ambulance and Coastguard helicopter crew who tried their best to assist in what were very difficult flying conditions. We are grateful to the Coastguard for flying him to the major trauma centre at Newcastle once he had been evacuated from the crag.

I would also like to formally ask that people do not criticise these climbers. These two very experienced mountaineers, who usually give up their time for free as rescue team volunteers, happened to be involved in an accident doing what they love. Rescue teams would not be able to put themselves out to help others if they didn’t enjoy the mountains or keep their personal skills high.’

– Mike Blakey, Team Leader, Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team