Very sad news

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Frank B
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Very sad news

Post by Frank B » Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:16 pm

http://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-w ... e-14140570


Good report on Can U Kayak on Ffacebook

Even "easy" rivers have their dangers

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Re: Very sad news

Post by Rae1 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:47 pm

Yes, indeed, very sad, and a reality check for all of us.
It was on a number of facebook groups earlier in the week, Apparently there were a few people there, both in and on the water, and they still couldnt get to him quick enough.

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Re: Very sad news

Post by andy g » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:51 am

There are others who may like to comment in more detail on this but as one of those present I will give some information.

There were lots of kayakers around, most of whom were about to get on the water, including coaches with groups.

He was in a group of 5. His boat and body were quite quickly drawn into the centre of the falls from where it was impossible to reach with throw lines.

Our group arrived at the top of the hill as the incident was developing, and those already on the water quickly sprang into action in order to effect an extraction. Initial efforts focused on throwing a line from boats in the water located a safe distance from the tow back , and at first he was making efforts to take the lines, but after some minutes (no idea how long) the activity stopped and he was lifeless in the recirculation. At this point a very brave individual boater went in on a livebait line right into the tow back, capsized himself , grabbed the body and was pulled to safety by his anchor man, leaving two boats in the recirc. The body was quickly got to one of the small islands river left and full cpr started by the kayakers already there.

Transporting the body to the shore was an issue that was solved by getting commandeering a raft that was about to get on downstream and with throwlines attached this was launched and paddled to the island, his body was transferred to the raft and it was pulled ashore upstream and across the small rocky steps by all the kayakers on the bank.

After what seemed like an age (but was probably about 15/20 minutes) the first full paramedics arrived with all their kit, followed by police and the fire and rescue crews, and lastly the air ambulance. We were able to brief the professionals on what had taken place and left them to carry on with the task. He was flown in the air ambulance to Wythenshawe hospital, so we all hoped there was still a glimmer of hope , however feeble.

It was later that the police debriefed with the sad news that he had not made it, but they did also say that the whole kayaking community had done the best possible job in getting him out of the water and starting the recovery with the equipment we had available.

None of us had any appetite to paddle after that and retired for tea and cakes in Llangollen, and drove home feeling pretty shattered.

One learning point that we took was to always carry a phone in the BA. The members of the public who made the initial 999 call had great difficulty in communicating with the dispatcher the seriousness of the situation and kept asking irrelevant questions like "what is his name , how old is he" etc?.
Last edited by Mark Gawler on Tue Jan 16, 2018 4:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Certain inaccurate information has been removed.

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Re: Very sad news

Post by Poke » Mon Jan 15, 2018 12:41 pm

Thanks for sharing Andy.

Whilst it can't have been easy, I think sharing accounts of serious incidents such as this can be very useful.

I do normally carry a phone with me on the water, but not having had to make such an urgent call to the rescue services in the past, something I had not considered is how many less serious calls the 999 call handlers must be dealing with. The result being that unless you are absolutely clear with them (not at all easy in such a situation) time could be wasted as they try to determine the urgency of your call.

My condolences to all involved.
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Re: Very sad news

Post by Sean_soup » Mon Jan 15, 2018 2:51 pm

Poke wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 12:41 pm
... time could be wasted as they try to determine the urgency of your call.
Unless things have changed very recently, or phone operators are trying to do triage during the current crisis in the NHS (which seems extremely unlikely), this should not be the case.

999 operators do not have the mindset that some of their calls are not urgent because the service is intended for emergencies *only*. Once the operator knows where the caller is, what number they're calling from and what has happened, help is on the way.

Questions asked after that point will not delay the response because it has already been dispatched - the operator is gathering information to pass on to paramedics while they're en-route.

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Re: Very sad news

Post by Matt Cooke » Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:20 pm

There were many small groups that happened to be getting on at the same time. I was paddling with Daz that day and the Bangor boys came as an individual group like many others did for a leisurely blast down. At a guess, there were over ten professional padders and guides present and everyone did the absolute best they could for Kev. All we can take from this is to be more cautious of the weir at higher levels with kayaks and rafts. Much love goes out to the family and his many loved friends at Bangor Uni and beyond.

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Re: Very sad news

Post by Dave @ TRC » Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:03 pm

The people that truly need to know what happed and the effort and bravery put in by my peers , and friends , on the 7th know ie ( THE FAMILY ) . I Also know none of them did it for praise or reward, and I know they would all do it again if required on the water . I also know Kevin did nothing anyone else hadn't done on the water that day, he was unlucky and paid the ultimate price despite the efforts of all involved on the day . Rest In Peace Kevin .
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Frank B
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Re: Very sad news

Post by Frank B » Mon Jan 15, 2018 7:37 pm

I started this thread because I was one of the many bystanders who watched this dreadful event unfold. Three main things learned

I was stood by one of the walkers ringing 999, as mentioned above it was hard for the caller to convety the sense of urgency, the call handler wanted to know too much irrelevant information , eg name, age, address all of which wasted valuable time

I never take my phone on the river, I will now. I was not the only one buying Aquapacs at Manchester Canoes this week because of this incident

I went on a British Red Cross first aid course this week

I think the rescue effort was brilliant, lots of very able kayakers did their utmost to save this lad,probably none of whom Knew him which says a lot about our community

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Re: Very sad news

Post by Mark R » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:11 pm

Well done to all involved in trying to save this man's life.
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Re: Very sad news

Post by Northern Blue » Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:39 pm

Frank B wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 7:37 pm

I was stood by one of the walkers ringing 999, as mentioned above it was hard for the caller to convety the sense of urgency, the call handler wanted to know too much irrelevant information , eg name, age, address all of which wasted valuable time

I never take my phone on the river, I will now. I was not the only one buying Aquapacs at Manchester Canoes this week because of this incident
Frank, please be assured that 999 calls are treat exactly as sean_soup has described above and that while the operator is asking for those extra details, they will have already despatched the emergency response on receipt of the location and nature of the call; and subsequent questioning will not delay that response.

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Re: Very sad news

Post by Frank B » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:50 am

Frank, please be assured that 999 calls are treat exactly as sean_soup has described above and that while the operator is asking for those extra details, they will have already despatched the emergency response on receipt of the location and nature of the call; and subsequent questioning will not delay that response.
That's very re assuring, paramedics / police did arrive fairly quickly. Also credit to the Air Ambulance guys, it looked like a tricky place to land given the steepness of the adjacent hill

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