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Firefighters test water rescue skills in simulated aeroplane crash

Firefighters and paramedics from across Berkshire took part in a water rescue exercise to test how they would respond to an aircraft crash.

Slough and Wargrave stations were among the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service participants of ‘Operation Splash’ at Dinton Pastures on Thursday, January 17.

It simulated the aftermath of a mid-air collision above a lake between a Piper Cherokee plane and a microlight, which gave firefighters and South Central Ambulance Service responders a chance to practise their water rescue skills.

A rescue boat was deployed while the ‘victims’ were played by the Casualties Union, which provides emergency services with members who act as injured people in exercises.

Group Manager Paul Jones, who oversaw the operation, said: “This scenario meant one crew had to transfer themselves to the island using the rescue boat, taking all their skills and cutting gear with them, while another crew worked on the second aircraft on the shore, with casualties in both locations.

“Testing and exercising our skills to the maximum is essential to ensure we are always fully prepared to protect the public from any situation, no matter how rare, and I would like to thank everyone who took part in helping us.”


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