Cumbria

Man and son in 'knife edge' Scafell Pike mountain rescue

Jess in mist on hill Image copyright Wasdale MRT
Image caption A rescue dog called Jess located the lost pair in the mist

A man and his teenage son who got lost in bad weather on England's highest mountain were in a "knife edge situation", rescuers have said.

The duo were found in the "accident blackspot" of Piers Gill on Scafell Pike in the Lake District.

Wasdale Mountain Rescue Team (MRT) said the pair were ill-equipped for the conditions and were trying to navigate with phone apps.

A rescue dog called Jess found the duo in mist and low light on Tuesday.

Image copyright Wasdale MRT
Image caption Piers Gill is an "accident blackspot" according to the rescue team

A team spokesman said 14 members and Jess responded to a call from Cumbria Police, who had been contacted by the lost pair at 18:30 BST.

The man and his son were given head torches and escorted back to the valley floor in social-distancing conditions, with the rescuers keeping two metres apart.

"Piers Gill is an extremely dangerous environment where we have sadly experienced many fatalities over the decades," the spokesman said.

Image copyright Wasdale MRT
Image caption Social distancing was maintained throughout the rescue

"Through making poor judgements on the weather forecast, the equipment they failed to bring and also the reliance on navigating by phone apps, the gentleman and his teenage son found themselves in a knife edge situation that could have very easily gone either way putting themselves and team members at risk."

The spokesman said "nobody is perfect" and "we can't always make the right call" and the team has written guidance on how best to prepare for such expeditions.

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