Police appeal to walkers after hill top rescue drama

Rossendale and Pendle Mountain Rescue team guide the lost walkers to safety from Pendle Hill.
Rossendale and Pendle Mountain Rescue team guide the lost walkers to safety from Pendle Hill.

A police chief has appealed for walkers and climbers to check the weather forecast thoroughly before venturing out.

The appeal comes after three people had to be rescued from Pendle Hill close to Barley on Sunday after they got lost in blizzard like conditions which weather forecasters described as a "white out."

Inspector Steve Bradshaw, who is force incident manager for Lancashire Police,said: "“Weather conditions were that bad the walkers could not see in front of them so for them to try and make their own way down could have been potentially disastrous.

"It is vital that people check the weather forecast before they set out. Looking out of the window and seeing that it is fine is not good enough, especially when weather can vary so much on lower and higher ground.

"You must check the longterm forecast for the area you are planning to visit.

Inspector Bradshaw also called for walkers to make sure they are equipped with the right kit for walking so they are prepared for all weather conditions.

Rossendale and Pendle Mountain Rescue team were called by police at about 2.40pm after the walkers reported they were lost.

A statement from the service said the full team was immediately deployed to Barley.

The statement said: “Lancashire Police were in constant contact with the lost persons, who described their location as being near to Scout Cairn.

“While en-route to this incident, a Mountain Rescue SARLOC, which is an app on a phone used to locate missing climbers and walkers, was sent out to one of the walkers’ mobile phones, which instantly verified their location.

“A short time later, team members arrived at Scout Cairn locating all three lost persons.

“All were very cold, however uninjured.”

The team was stood down at about 6.20pm.

Inspector Bradshaw described the operation as “team work at its best” as a member of the mountain rescue team was in the police control room at the time.

He said: “Using SARLOC we were able to pinpoint the exact location of the walkers so we told them to remain where they were and relayed this information to the volunteers."