Stay safe on Fife’s hills

The rescue helicopter flies over Burntisland
The rescue helicopter flies over Burntisland

Hill climbers and ramblers enjoying Fife’s natural beauty spots have been warned to take every precaution to keep themselves safe.

The advice comes after three youths had to be rescued from a clifftop on Burntisland’s Binn Hill on Wednesday night in atrocious weather conditions.

We recommend you stick to the clearly marked paths and check the weather forecast before heading out

Colin Ferguson

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s Thornton Operations Control sent the line rescue team, with specialist rescue equipment from Lochgelly fire station, along with appliances from Burntisland to the scene at 7.52 p.m, and Police Scotland at the same time mobilised its own helicopter and requested the attendance of the RAF Search and Rescue helicopter.

Colin Ferguson, station manager, said: “Crews arrived to find three youths trapped on the cliff face with the potential risk of falling 50 feet. Firefighters used specialist line rescue equipment to descend to the youths and secured them so they could not fall further.

“Due to the extreme weather conditions and fading light, the RAF Search & Rescue helicopter was utilised to lift them off the cliff face to safety.”

The casualties, suffering from mild hypothermia, were checked over by ambulance personnel but did not require any further treatment.

Station manager Ferguson added: “It is important to be properly prepared if you decide to go walking in such areas and we recommend you stick to the clearly marked paths and check the weather forecast before heading out.

“While it is spring time, the extreme weather conditions that were faced by all at the scene turned a fairly routine rescue in to a relatively difficult one.

“All emergency responding agencies played a key role in bringing this difficult rescue to a safe conclusion and the role of the RAF Search & Rescue helicopter cannot be underestimated.

“Sometimes it can be difficult to get access to people trapped or injured and the conditions can be precarious. We would urge people to take care and stay safe while enjoying exploring these areas.”