Emergency Rescue: Air, Land & Sea: Spotlight on Winch Paramedic Niall Hanson

In last Sunday’s episode of ‘Emergency Rescue: Air, Land & Sea’, we saw our Newquay search and rescue helicopter crew sent to the aid of Nicola, a holidaymaker on the Isles of Scilly, who badly broke her arm and needed urgent medical care on the mainland in Cornwall. While on the way to the hospital the crew were diverted to help in the search for two missing divers. 

Winch Paramedic Niall Hanson, who has worked onboard search and rescue helicopters for the past 12 years, said:

“You never really know what you’re going to be faced with when sent on a mission, we prepare and train for many different scenarios but we all know that things can change very quickly.

“When we heard that there were two missing divers we evaluated the situation, Nicola, the lady with the broken arm, was stable and we were managing her pain so we took the decision to help with the search. We were all scanning the water for the divers, I was starting to get my gear on so that I could enter the water quickly if needed as well as continuing to keep an eye on Nicola. 

“Thankfully the divers were found by a passing boat and taken onboard a lifeboat which meant that we could carry on with our journey to hospital.

“I have to admit, it did take some getting used to having the cameras follow us around the base and on missions but we all soon got used to it. They were extremely professional and were able to see first-hand just how quickly things can change!”

Before you go diving consider your fitness and skill level, is this the right dive for you? Always check the weather and the tide, carry out buddy checks, use a surface marker buoy (SMB) and take a means of calling for help. Don’t hesitate in calling 999 and asking for the Coastguard if someone is in difficulty or overdue, acting quickly can make all the difference, in search and rescue every second really does count.

You can catch up with all the episodes here

Don’t forget this week’s brand new episode on Sunday at 9pm on More4.

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