Last week, at the request of the local fire service, the boatyard was used to conduct an exercise to remove a casualty from a confined space. The CalMac vessel Raasay was in the boatshed at the time and the CalMac superintendent was happy for the vessel to be used in the exercise.
About 20 personnel from the Fort William and Mallaig rescue services took part with members of the ambulance service, Corpach Boatbuilding Company and Caledonian MacBrayne in attendance to observe the event.
The exercise simulated the recovery of an injured casualty from a void space below the main deck of the Raasay. The recue services had to confirm that the space was gas free and safe to enter, enable two firemen to enter the space wearing breathing apparatus and then evacuate the casualty through a very small deck hatch.
All the parties involved thought that the exercise had been invaluable in preparing for a serious event of this nature and helped to develop procedures to ensure a successful outcome if an emergency involving a confined space was to occur.
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