Page last updated at 08:40 GMT, Tuesday, 16 June 2009 09:40 UK

Injured 'expecting' an air rescue

RAF rescue helicopter
The rescue committee statistician praised the role of air crews

Some people who suffer minor injuries while climbing or walking in Scotland's hills expect to be airlifted from the scene, a veteran rescuer has said.

David Whalley, statistician for the Mountain Rescue Committee of Scotland, said people thought they would be "plucked off the hill" in any weather.

The former RAF Kinloss rescue team member spoke out while making his report on incident figures for 2008.

The year saw 20 fatalities and teams go to the aid of 518 people.

The number of deaths was the same as 2007.

There have been 11 fatalities so far this year.

High number

During 2008, Scottish teams spent a total of almost 28,000 hours on rescues and searches, according to figures compiled by Mr Whalley.

The Search and Rescue Dog Association (Sarda) Scotland and Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team assisted in 94 incidents.

Glencoe also had a high number of call outs to deal with 58 incidents.

Mr Whalley praised the role played by Royal Navy, RAF, Maritime and Coastguard Agency, police and Scottish Ambulance Service helicopter crews.

But in his report he added: "Unfortunately there are some casualties who think that if they need assistance for very minor ailments they will be 'plucked off the hill' in any weather.

"Fortunately the police, mountain rescue team leaders and air rescue co-ordination centre monitor this problem and manage to filter such requests."

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