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Mobile phone leads to rider’s rescue

A stark reminder to riders about the importance of carrying a mobile phone after accident victim raises the alarm following a fall out hacking

A successful police air search was launched to find horseowner Nicole Hind after she fell off out hacking near the M57 in Lancashire and was unable to tell operators her location.

Nicole, a primary school teacher from Prescot, regularly hacks out on her coloured 15.2hh eight-year-old gelding Ebon.

One morning last month, Nicole rang her husband Gary to tell him she was going out riding.

I always ring my husband to let him know that I’m going riding and then again when I get back,” explainsNicole “There isn’t always someone at the yard during the day to let them know where I’m going, but I know that if Gary couldn’t get hold of me, he would know something had happened.”

Nicole’s cautious planning certainly paid off on the day she fell off in a field next to the M57.

I don’t remember anything about that day or bits of the previous evening,” says Nicole. “Apparently, I rang Gary as usual to say I was about to hack out and then 10 minutes later I rang him again telling him I had fallen off.”

Bruised and concussed after falling off, Nicole rang 999, and although she was unable to tell the operators where she was, she told them where she had started her journey.

Emergency operators decided to scramble a police helicopter to search the surrounding area.

They were able to direct an ambulance to Nicole who was then taken to Whiston Hospital where she was kept in overnight.

“Luckily nothingwas broken but my face was grazed and swollen and I had quite bad concussion,” says Nicole. “I have absolutely no idea what happened that day, Ebon is normally very docile and well behaved, but this just proves how essential it is never to go out without a phone.”

Sheila Hardy, head of the safety department at the BHS said: “The BHS supports riders carrying mobile phones but strongly advise against using one while mounted.”

“Any rider engaging in a conversationshould do so with their feet on the ground.”

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