New Year, New Guidance!
Can we still travel to the hills?
It depends how close you live to the hills, so please read on..
The key Scottish Government Guidance appears to be the paragraphs below:
To minimise the risk of spreading the virus, you must stay at home as much as possible. By law, in a level 4 area, you can only leave your home (or garden) for an essential purpose. Examples of reasonable excuses to go out include local outdoor recreation, sport or exercise, walking, cycling, golf, or running that starts and finishes at the same place (which can be up to 5 miles from the boundary of your local authority area).
Although you can leave home for these purposes, you should stay as close to home as possible. Travel no further than you need to reach to a safe, non-crowded place to exercise in a socially distanced way.
Who can I go out into the hills with?
– Up to 2 people from 2 separate households can meet outdoors for sport, exercise or social interaction.
– The members of an individual or extended household can meet outdoors for sport, exercise or social interaction.
Are Mountain Rescue Teams still responding?
Yes, we are responding, but Covid-19 has an impact:
– Rescues will take longer than they normally do
– PPE is designed for indoor environments, it does not work effectively in the mountains in winter
– Winter callouts are manpower intensive and hard work (lots of heavy breathing)
– It is unlikely that we can protect the MR team or the casualty effectively if either a team member or the casualty is already infected.
– We work very very hard to manage risk but COVID is not a risk we can effectively manage on winter rescues, it will be luck whether we and you get infected or not.
What can I do if I am able to still visit the hills?
– Be extra safe
– Don’t push your limits or the conditions
– Take extra emergency clothing and food
– Follow the Thinkwinter guidance and spend longer planning
What do I do if I need help?
Call 999. Ask for Police, then ask for Mountain Rescue. We will respond, but it may take longer than you or we would like.