Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) will be putting their skills to the test on Wednesday morning, 6 December, as they take part in a mud rescue exercise in Rochester.
Larkfield’s crew will be leading the training with their Water Safety Unit, the team specialise in rescues from water and unstable surfaces. They will be joined on the day by colleagues from Thames-side fire station for the rescue scenario, which starts at 10.30am.
The drama unfolds with a simulated 999 call to KFRS’ emergency control centre to reports that a dog walker has gone after his pet and become stuck in the mud near the Medway Valley Leisure Park in Chariot Way, Rochester.
“With temperatures near freezing and the tide starting to turn, time is of the essence” explains Larkfield crew manager, Julian Hartley, organiser of the simulated rescue. “Our priority is to get the best possible outcome for those who need our help by using our knowledge, training and skills in a collaborative way to save lives.”
Crews wearing dry suits and life jackets will use swift water rescue equipment and a mud path – a portable rescue platform to reach the stricken casualty and bring him to safety.
Julian added: “We’re called to a wide range of challenging incidents and have to work under pressure, often in difficult conditions and all weathers. Our job is about saving lives and achieving the best possible outcome for those trapped or injured as quickly and effectively as possible and this type of training provides an excellent opportunity for our firefighters to test our response, incident command, casualty handling and time critical care skills.”
“The best way to avoid becoming trapped is to stick to footpaths and solid ground if you’re out walking and keep your dog on a lead near mud and ice.”
Our advice for what you should do if you do become stuck in mud include:
Lie down, spread your arms and legs wide apart and shout for help
Get someone to call 999
Do not stand upright or attempt any movement as this makes you sink even more quickly
If you see someone stuck in the mud, always go for help - do not go into the mud yourself
Photographers are welcome to attend the training, just confirm your attendance to the KFRS Press Office on 01622 212425.