Friday, February 29, 2008

Riftswood Footpaths Closed

Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council have closed two footpaths this afternoon in Riftswood in Saltburn's Valley Gardens after two people needed hospital treatment. The incident happened in the early afternoon when a tree was blown down in the fierce winds. One person was taken to hospital by ambulance and a second needed to be freed by the fire and rescue service and paramedics before being flown to hospital by the air ambulance.

George Crooks, Redcar Fire Station manager, said: “The two ladies were walking a dog together in the park at Saltburn and a fairly substantial tree came down and hit both of them. The tree had broken into a number of parts. We believe an older tree had fallen and hit it. It broke some three to four metres up the trunk and fell right across the public walkway on to the ladies.” The firefighters involved included the retained crew from Saltburn. Mr Crooks commended the team. “The fire crews raised the tree sufficiently using manpower and levers. It was a very protracted and time-consuming incident, but had to be that way to ensure safety. The partnership approach was a huge success and will hopefully lead to the full recovery of both ladies."

Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council Leader Councillor George Dunning said: "This has been an extremely unfortunate accident due to the fierce swirling winds in the area. Our thoughts are with the two people who have been injured and we wish them a speedy recovery.We have evaluated the situation and taken the decision to close the two main paths, which both lead parallel from the Saltburn Woodland Centre to Marske Mill Lane because of the high winds and the forecast of more to come this weekend."

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