TWO young girls were dramatically rescued after getting stuck in sinking mud.
Six police officers, one of the girl’s parents, two ambulance crews and three fire engines, as well as the police helicopter were called upon for the rescue, which happened near the former Victoria Colliery site in Standish.
The girls – aged 11 and 12 – were playing with a friend at the popular woodland area between Standish Golf Club and Cranleigh, when they became stuck in mud and began to sink.
One of the girls, all of whom are from Standish, managed to get free and acted quickly by calling the police and running to get help when the incident happened at shortly before 2pm on Monday.
PC Kathryn Gaskell, which is based at Wigan Police Station, was one of the first people to respond to the stricken girls’ cries for help. She said: “Thanks to the quick thinking actions of one of the young girls, the story has a happy ending. They were out enjoying themselves over the half-term when they became stuck. Thankfully one managed to get free and called for help.
“Six officers including myself and PC Sean Robinson attended and the girls were pulled free using rescue lines we carry in our vehicles. We had called the helicopter to help locate the girls as it is quite a large area, but thankfully one of the girl’s parents had arrived at around the same time and we were able to find them.
“The girls were very cold and covered in mud and obviously very shaken but were okay. They were taken to Wigan Infirmary as a precaution.
“I would like to reiterate how important it is for any youngsters caught in similar circumstances to do what these girls did, by remaining calm and calling for help as soon as possible.”
The rescue caused quite a stir among local residents as the emergency vehicles descended on Cranleigh.
Joan Jennings, who lives on Cranleigh, said: “We don’t really see many people down the street as it doesn’t lead anywhere but we were surprised to see the fire engines, Police and ambulances. We are just pleased to hear that the girls were okay.”
Another Cranleigh resident, Derrick Smith, said: “The area is popular with kids and dog walkers, but does get really muddy at this time of year.”
Jim Bridge, watch manager at Wigan Fire Station, said: “We were asked to assist in the rescue of the girls, but thankfully when we arrived the police had already freed them. We sent two engines from Wigan and asked for a special unit from Eccles which has special equipment for such rescues.”
Do you know the girls who were rescued on Monday? If so, contact the Wigan newsroom on 01942 506 279, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.