Posted: Fri 4th Jun 2021

Radio coverage for mountain rescuers in North Wales boosted through help of fire service

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Jun 4th, 2021

Mountain rescuers in North Wales are set to benefit thanks to a project to provide critical radio communications coverage.

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service and the North Wales Mountain Rescue Association have been working together at Cerrigydrudion Fire Station to supply coverage in Snowdon and the Llyn Brenig area.

North Wales Mountain Rescue Association is a representative body for the volunteer mountain, lowland, cave and search dog teams in North Wales.

Steve Morris from North Wales Fire and Rescue Service said: “Early this year, the North Wales Mountain Rescue Association approached me to assist with the challenge of providing radio coverage for their volunteers in the area surrounding Llyn Brenig and south-eastern Snowdonia.

“They identified Cerrigydrudion Fire Station as an ideal location for a radio repeater.

“We already have high speed, secure public sector networks in all of our fire stations to enable split-second fire mobilisations and to allow our fire crew to use the computers.

“Connected to that network is a radio repeater pointed at a wind turbine that then floods the surrounding area with signal.

“It’s very satisfying to squeeze extra value out of it at no extra cost, it just required some mutual creative thinking.”

Gerald Davison, volunteer IT and comms lead for the association, who is also an on-call firefighter at Mold Fire Station, said: “It’s been great to work with Steve Morris and Matt Topp at the fire and rescue service to get this service up and running really quickly.

“The alternative would have been an expensive connection for a small repeater site and as a small charity we could not afford the ongoing costs.”

Tim Radford, chair of the North Wales Mountain Rescue Association, said: “We are very grateful to North Wales Fire and Rescue Service for assisting the volunteer land search and rescue teams in North Wales.

“We look forward to working together on other sites where we need network access, so we can better serve those in need in rural and mountain areas.”

Steve added: “Cerrigydrudion Fire Station now forms part of four linked radio repeaters providing coverage to the Llanberis North Wales Mountain Rescue Association team.

“These four sites area part of a pilot that, if successful, will form part of a much larger network across North Wales.

“Thanks to our participation in their project, Cerrigydrudion plays an important role in providing essential radio coverage.

“I’m excited to continue helping with my newly found colleagues at North Wales Mountain Rescue Association with their rollout.”

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