Rescue teams mark 50 years of service

KT takes a break with her handler Ian Burley after finding all three of the casualties.
KT takes a break with her handler Ian Burley after finding all three of the casualties.
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Three missing walkers were lost in gale force winds in the Peak District National Park.

If that scenario happened 50 years ago, they could have lost their lives.

But thanks to the Peak District Mountain Rescue Organisation, which was established in 1964 after a series of fatalities in Derbyshire, they would now be more likely to be found and taken home.

A two-year-old Welsh Border Collie called KT led a make-believe training exercise to find ‘lost’ walkers to mark the 50th anniversary of the rescue service.

One of the ‘victims’ was injured, and needed to be carried away on a stretcher for treatment.

KT is the newest recruit to Kinder Mountain Rescue Team, one of seven such teams working in the Peak District.

Handler Ian Burley said: “She has already passed the first stage of her training and has another three assessments to pass before she can help us on real call-outs.

“KT is a free-range-scenting dog and is learning to identify and locate the smell of any humans.

“It’s important that we go ahead of the rest of the rescue team so that their smells don’t throw the dog off the scent of the victims.

“She found all three of the ‘casualties’ and guided me to them, well before the rest of the team arrived.”