By Bude Coastguard:
Bude Coastguard Rescue Team was paged at 15:22 today and tasked to Strangles Beach, just south of Crackington Haven, following the report of a dog over the cliff. Boscastle Coastguard Team was also paged.
As two members of Boscastle CRT arrived ahead of the rest of the teams, they set off toward the beach to look for the first informant.
Meanwhile, Bude and Boscastle CRTs arrived on scene and immediately began unloading the rope rescue gear and carrying it down the long cliff path. A member of the team took up a position as radio relay so that communication with the Rescue Vehicle and onward to the Coastguard
Operations Centre in Falmouth could be maintained, as Strangles Beach is at the bottom of the highest cliff in Cornwall.
With the first informant and the dog located by the Boscastle CRT members, the rest of the teams zoned in on their location on the last stretch of the cliff path above the beach. The dog himself had slipped his lead and gone over the path on to the cliff face, and had settled in a precarious position on a short but steep scree slope, which ended in a ledge and then a 40-50ft drop to the beach below.
As the gear was brought down the path and prepared, two Rescue Technicians – one from Bude and one from Boscastle – put on harnesses in preparation for the rescue, with the Boscastle Technician acting as Edge Safety Officer (ESO), making his way to the edge once secured to a line, to keep watch over the dog as the other Rescue Technician from Bude prepared himself for the rescue.
With everything in place and all team members prepared, the Rescue Technician made his way over the cliff edge and was lowered to just below the dog’s position. From there, with some kind words, one of the dog’s preferred treats, and a little coaxing into our Dog Rescue Bag, the scared but compliant dog was placed in the bag, which was then zipped up and secured, and then recovered to the cliff top by the Rescue
Technician, where he was quickly reunited with his owners.
The owners did exactly the right thing – they did not attempt to rescue the dog themselves, but instead dialled 999 and asked for the Coastguard.