As part of our Emergency Service Heroes campaign, we want to say a big thank you to all of the emergency services for their hard work and dedication to keeping us safe 24/7. To help you get to know all of the emergency services a little better, we’ll be looking into all the different teams that make up the emergency services and telling you a little bit more about what they do. Carry on reading to find out more about mountain rescue!

What is mountain rescue?

The mountain rescue service is a charity staffed by on-call volunteers, who carry out rescues every day of the year to help those who become injured, ill or stuck on mountains and hills, as well as carrying out river rescues or supporting urban rescues.

Mountain rescue teams in the UK are not funded by the government and therefore must rely on donations and funding to buy the equipment they need for the 1500 rescues that they carry out each year.

Who makes up a mountain rescue team?

As each mountain rescue team is made up of volunteers, the structure of each team differs. Generally though, each team will consist of:

  • Experienced outdoorsmen or women who are familiar with local mountains and terrain
  • Admin volunteers who will help to manage the day-to-day running of the team
  • Fundraisers to help each team gather donations

What do mountain rescue teams do?

Mountain rescue teams are involved in a number of incidents and rescues, not just on mountains! Although they may primarily help walkers, hikers or skiers that have become trapped or injured on a mountain, they will also help to rescue trapped livestock, carry out river searches or assist with urban searches.

What mountain rescue equipment is used?

A wide range of equipment is needed by mountain rescue teams. This may include:

  • 4x4 vehicles to access difficult terrain
  • Maps, compasses and navigation tools
  • Medical and first aid kits
  • Stretchers to carry injured persons
  • Climbing equipment
  • Heavy-duty torches
  • Area Lighting
  • Protective Cases

What training do mountain rescue teams go through?

Mountain rescue training is generally tough, and requires in-depth knowledge in a number of areas. Mountain rescue volunteers must be:

  • Physically fit
  • Experienced in the outdoors
  • Familiar with local mountains and terrain
  • Able to navigate effectively
  • Familiar with first aid
  • Familiar with climbing and trekking equipment

The tough recruitment process and training ensures that mountain rescue teams are well prepared for any eventuality and can quickly rescue those who are in trouble.

How do I contact mountain rescue?

If you run into trouble when you’re out on the mountains, you can contact mountain rescue by calling ‘999’ and asking for the police, then mountain rescue. You’ll need to give them as much information as possible about your location and what has happened.

Alternatively, if you’d like to find out more about your local mountain rescue team and how you can get involved, take a look at the Mountain Rescue England website to find your local team.

If you’d like to nominate your local mountain rescue team to be in with a chance of winning a £2000 Peli prize bundle, take a look at our Emergency Service Heroes campaign page and submit your nominations by the end of May!