Most of you will have seen in the media that there were two rescues of women from the river Clyde in the vicinity of the Albert Bridge in the past few weeks. Both these rescues involved Glasgow Humane Society with Officer George informed by members of the public.
In the first incident they did
not give the exact situation and exact locus of a woman in the water, and
George arrived upstream of the weir/dam by boat and had to leave the boat
there and run to the locus downstream of the weir/dam. George entered the
water wearing a lifejacket, a safety rope round his waist and pushing a
lifebelt in front of him to allow for a non contact tow. With three rowing
club members holding his safety line, George swam out and caught hold of the
woman who was at that point, sinking. As for various reasons beyond his
control, George's safety line was floating loose in the water, however a
fire and rescue hose line provided the means of a rapid return to shore and
quickly the woman was taken into an Ambulance. A very cold George returned
upstream to the wharf with his boat.
George would like to thanks Officer Tony, Lifeguard Alex Macdonald, and rowers James Murphy, Donald Shearer and David Russell. He would also like to thank Strathclyde Police and Strathclyde Fire and Rescue.
We were not caught out a second time, when word was received that another woman was in the water "below the weir.
This time the Glasgow humane Society "machine" worked like clockwork. George LG's Colin Rae and Ben Parsonage ran to the House where boats on trailers are kept. While George and Ben pushed the boat out of the side gate, Colin drove George's car round to meet them. With George at the wheel they sped the 400 metres to the gate between the Weir and the Albert Bridge. Tony had driven ahead to the weir to open this gate; LG Ross Couper had run to the locus. As we launched the boat down the banking we were receiving word that two more persons were in the water rescuing the woman.
The time from receiving the call to when the boat was launched was less than 3 minutes.
Tony and George rowed out into the stream to find that the two rescuers had managed to swim the woman to the Nautical College pontoon where a third person was helped the three of them from the water. George and Tony drew alongside the pontoon as Fire and Rescue Officers with resuscitation equipment arrived on the pontoon. Leaving F&R with the rescued woman, George and Tony ferried the two rescuers to the north bank where there was a waiting Ambulance, as at least one of the rescuers required medical treatment.
LG's Colin and Ross now manned the lifeboat and rowed downriver retrieving 5 lifebelts that had been thrown into the river in rescue attempts. LG's Ben Colin, Ross with Officer Tony returned these lifebelts to empty stances. With assistance from Strathclyde Police Officers, and members of rowing clubs we lifted the boat from the water and replaced it on its trailer, again in readiness. A job well done and thanks to all who assisted. A special vote of appreciation goes to the three Glasgow University students who carried out a very brave, and tactically well though out rescue. Although not officially "on call" for rescue, it is only correct that any boat in the vicinity competent of carrying out a rescue attends and it is pleasing to see that the Glasgow Humane Society is still in a state of readiness, willing and able to help a fellow human being in distress.
Several more rescues have been carried out since the above incidents including one where five youngsters from a capsized racing boat were speedily brought from the water..