PSNI take to the Eglinton glar in training exercise

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Spare a thought for the PSNI search and rescue team who had to trudge through the Eglinton glar at the weekend while training for the unlikely scenario of an aeroplane overshooting the runway at City of Derry Airport (CoDA).

The human, and canine, members of the team joined members of the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS), the Coastguard (HMCG) and the Foyle Search and Rescue charity on the Faughanvale sloblands for the vital emergency readiness exercise.

Posting photographs of the Lough Foyle slog on Saturday, PSNI officers at Strand Road joked: “‘Join the Police Search and Rescue Team’, they said.

“‘It’s physical, wild and adventurous; all while helping others’”, they said.

“They didn’t say, ‘slog through thick, cold, smelly mud at the back of City of Derry Airport’”.

“But hey, if something awful happens like a plane overshooting the runway, we all have to be sure that we could get everyone to safety.”

The emergency services routinely carry out multi-agency training exercises at the local airport in order to test capacity for dealing with emergency scenarios.

Forewarning the public of the operation on Saturday afternoon, CoDA said emergency fire and rescue cover in the wider Derry and Strabane area was not affected.

“The purpose of the exercise is to test CoDA’s emergency and safety capability,” the airport said.

The exercise took place outside the airport’s normal operating hours.