2013 Incident #6 03.02.13 2012UTC #0303

February 4, 2013

The Initial Response Team was tasked to rescue a lost person who had become disorientated whilst returning to Charmouth along the coast path. The exhausted visitor had intended to walk from Charmouth to Golden Cap. He was unable to leave the beach at St Gabriel’s steps because they have been washed away with the recent poor weather. He had continued east to Seatown and decided to return to Charmouth along the coast path at night. The coast path is very difficult underfoot and currently impassable in some locations. He had reached a foot bridge on the path that has been closed, due to the a landslide, without an alternative route indicated. He had endeavourded to retrace his steps and become lost and phoned 999 for help. Fortunately, he had seen one of the signs that mark the length of coast path and he was able to give the Coastguard with a grid reference. The walker was returned to his accommodation without the need for medical attention.

  • Think about the equipment, experience, capabilities and enthusiasm of your party members, taking into account the time of year, the terrain and the nature of the trip – and choose your routes accordingly.
  • Always check the weather and tidal conditions before you set out along beaches and coastal paths. Consider whether you could become cut off and do not take risks.
  • Charge your phone battery! Many accidents occur towards the end of the day when both you and your phone may be low on energy.
  • Eat well before you start out!
  • Leave your route plan including start and finish points, estimated time of return and contact details with an appropriate party
  • If you are able to give some idea of your location i.e a grid reference, please stayclose by, we will find you so much quicker.
  • If you get into difficulty, call 999 and ask for the coastguard. Do not attenpt to self rescue.

SWCP Grid Reference Info Poster_250526ZSEPT12